Notes from Jan

Heart to Heart not Hand to Hand

March 15, 2020

It’s Sunday and I’m sitting at home, not in a pew. Feels odd. For me, Sunday and church go together like bacon and eggs, which actually show up  every Sunday at our church, during adult Sunday School’s Bible and Breakfast. Church’s  suspended to slow the spread of the virus by social distancing, which isn’t easy. But then, when was doing what’s right ever easy?

While we temporarily distance ourselves from others to protect the herd, we need to remember this is for now  not for always. People can die from loneliness, feeling isolated, detached.   We need to belong and be loved.  Long before we hid from the Coronavirus, we began distancing ourselves from people with whom we disagreed. We shoved back our chairs and left the table in a huff or a sulk.  Too often, we gave up on listening and finding common ground for the common good.

Now, we’re in this together, fighting a virus that  doesn’t care about politics, gender,  ethnicity, religion, economic status, sexual identification or race.  Could a global pandemic  bring us together to fight hatred and greed, destroyers of more than our bodies?

On this Sunday, when many churches, synagogues and mosques are shuttered and today’s declared a national day of prayer, lets join heart to heart, since we can’t join hand to hand, and pray for each other, for those we disagree with and not be so selfishly distancing as to end with  “and God bless America.”  God bless the rest of the world, too.  We need to remember,”For God so loved the WORLD “along with how  and  why God still does.(John 3:16-17)

This pandemic’s global and God’s command to “love our neighbors as we love ourselves” crosses borders and oceans.

Our world needs infusions of hope and love.

Lets pray both are contagious.








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  • Reply Sue andringa March 15, 2020 at 4:00 pm

    Yes … so good, Jan ! I met with a friend here at Maravilla who has been very frightened by all that is going on in our world and also where we live. We talked and prayed and she gave her life to Jesus! Praise God! This virus provided a wonderful opportunity!

    • Reply Jan Carlberg March 16, 2020 at 10:33 am

      Tough times reveal who we are and what and who we really care about. It is a frightening time, to be sure, but an opportunity to share our faith, as you did with your friend, dear Sue.

  • Reply Jill MacCully March 15, 2020 at 4:12 pm

    Thank you so much, Sister Jan!!! So glad we have you to help us look up and out to a lost world during this crisis. I often remember Julian of Norwich’s saying when I’m tempted to despair, “All will be well, and all will be well, and all manner of things will be well.” Praying God will help us be faithful to respond to his promptings to love and do good versus becoming self absorbed in our little rabbit holes.:). Merci beaucoup

    • Reply Jan Carlberg March 16, 2020 at 11:09 am

      What a great gift to hear from you, Jill, and to be reminded of Saint Julian’s life and words. For some reading this blog, she may be unknown., so I’ll add this wee bio, which you already know. Julian lived from 1342-1429. in Norwich, England and her work, The Revelations of Divine Love, took more than twenty years to write. and is regarded as the first book written by a woman in England. Best of all, the words, “All will be well…” were spoken to her by Jesus in a vision not by her to buck up those who stopped by her small cell for prayer or counsel. She lived during the time of the Black Death, when the world was terrified amidst social unrest. Sound familiar?

  • Reply dale March 15, 2020 at 4:31 pm

    Thanks Jan. Now that we are acting, in some venues, the way we were called to act, perhaps we can take it up from here. I actually enjoyed worship this morning in my pjs until our granddaughter, who is staying with us, asked why Grandpa did not sing – I decided not to demonstrate.

    Blessings, Dale

    • Reply Jan Carlberg March 16, 2020 at 11:15 am

      Fear not, Dale. it’s never been about how we sing but that we sing. Maybe your style of singing is laughter. You infuse “merry” into heart’s knotted by fear. We need your kind of song, good friend.

  • Reply wendy lane March 15, 2020 at 4:55 pm

    Yes! So good!! <3

    • Reply Jan Carlberg March 16, 2020 at 11:16 am

      Keep spreading love and hope, Wendy and Steve. You’re good at that!

  • Reply Dan Russ March 15, 2020 at 5:05 pm

    We participated in morning prayer on screen led by two of our priests and two vestry members and shared communion with our daughter and her family in whose walkout basement we live. Praise God for his blessings and for his giving humanity the gift of technology to be used for his glory and our peace.

    • Reply Jan Carlberg March 16, 2020 at 11:25 am

      Isn’t that that the truth, Dan. It’s encouraging learning ways churches, including mine, found ways to be the church. Thank God for technology to keep us together and wisdom to know when to look for additional ways to connect heart to heart during this time of social-isolation. Who knows, maybe we’ll start writing letters again and calling to hear voices instead of texting. Peace to you and Kathy in Colorado.

  • Reply Julie Mozena March 15, 2020 at 6:23 pm

    Jan, you have a poet’s mind and heart. I love this message of heart to heart. Keep well.

    Love, Julie

    • Reply Jan Carlberg March 16, 2020 at 11:42 am

      Well, very dear Julie with the curly hair I’ve coveted more than once, what a grand gift to hear from one of Heather’s amazing friends and find we’ve connected heart to heart once again. Over the years, Jud and I valued together times and conversations around the table with the friends of our children and grandchildren. I love you and send prayers for your family and joy-full hope for future times around the table or on your beautiful back patio with Trevor’s homemade french fries and roasted chicken. Until we meet again, Cardamom!

  • Reply marylou March 15, 2020 at 10:01 pm

    Well said, from the heart of God to ours. Thank you. Marylou

  • Reply Jan Carlberg March 16, 2020 at 11:44 am

    Thank you, dear Marylou, for finding this blog and reconnecting. Wherever you show up, joy is sure to follow.

  • Reply Marianne Anderson April 20, 2020 at 9:42 am

    How can I subscribe for these emails, Jan?

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