Today’s Word from Pastor Jim…

Can you tell me how much a glass of water weighs? Go ahead and fill a glass half full or empty, depending on your outlook on life. Now hold it up high and see how much it weighs. Even our oldest and weakest readers will be able to hold the glass above their heads. So, tell me, does it feel heavy? If you filled your glass with one cup, that is 8 fluid ounces of water, then how much would it weigh? Forget the glass that holds the water for a moment; how much does 8 fluid ounces of water weigh? The answer: 8 ounces of water, in fact, weighs 8.3214 ounces. Why does everything need to be so complicated?

How much does one glass of water weigh? Is it heavy? Is it hard for you to hold the glass above your head? If you continue to hold it there, your answer may change; you will soon find that the actual weight becomes irrelevant. Is it heavy? No, it is not, but the longer that I have to hold it the more difficult it is. If you hold it for a minute, it seems quite light. If you hold it for an hour straight, your arm will begin to cramp up and feel completely numb. If you hold it for days, you will grow weary, you will not be able to hold the glass, and in time it will crash to the floor and break into pieces. The absolute weight of the glass doesn’t change, but the longer that you have to hold it, the heavier it gets.

The Covid19 pandemic has caused great disruption around the world. There have been 2,200 deaths in the State of Washington and more than a million deaths worldwide. Families and communities have been shattered, businesses have closed, and many have lost their jobs or their ability to work. Here on Whidbey Island we have been mostly spared. We have experienced unprecedented isolation, we have to wear masks, we have practiced social distancing, schools and churches have been mostly closed. Our burden has been real, but compared to most of the world our burden has been light.

How much does a glass of water weigh? It depends how long we have to hold it. The burden of this pandemic weighs heavy now, as we have been holding it, and holding on to hope, for the past seven months. The burden of this pandemic weighs heavy as we move into the darkness, chill, and the rains of the changing seasons. Add to the equation the uncertainty of the road ahead, and suddenly a simple glass of water seems very heavy indeed.

The only way that we will make it through the season ahead is to take turns. We need to take turns holding the glass. We need to understand that the pandemic burden is shared by a weary community, nation, and world. The young and old are suffering from anxiety and fatigue. If you are too tired to hold the glass, let me take a turn for you or with you. If you wake up one day this winter and cannot sing, let Karl sing for you. If you feel like you can’t go on, let a friend pick you up. If my spirit wanes or my arms get weary, I trust that your prayers will inspire me. We were never meant to journey alone; we need each other.

I cannot predict when this season will end, but I believe that we will make it to a new non-pandemic day. If we stay together no storm or virus will stop us, and I am sure that with each passing day we are one day closer.

Much love,

Pastor Jim