Aside is short-term. Collectively is endlessly.
For today's musical pairing, listen to "S.T.A.Y." from Hanz Zimmer's "Interstellar" soundtrack. Note that all of the songs for this series have been put together in a Spotify playlist here. See video below.
"The spirit you have received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again. Rather, the spirit you have received has brought about your adoption to sonship. And with him we call: Abba, father.
"Amen. Come, Lord Jesus."
Day 9,775,306 confirmed cases, 37,083 deaths worldwide.
My youngest daughter was born on the other side of the world into a family that I have never met. Because her heart hadn't formed properly, she was left in a baby safe in front of an orphanage and eventually found her way to people who provided the resources necessary for life-saving operations. Americans and Chinese, most of them followers of Jesus, helped her heal and grow.
She was three years old when her picture appeared on our Facebook feed. She needed a home and an "eternal family". My wife and I didn't have to make a decision. We simply recognized our daughter.
Adoption is a mysterious thing. It is not a decision to shape something new. It is a realization that something beautiful has already been formed and we are only now beginning to realize it. My wife fought like a lioness to bring her home. "My child is stuck in another country," she said. Our little girl called me Baba ("Papa") when we were talking about computer screens. Although we started on opposite sides of the planet, separated by oceans and borders, languages and cultures, she was part of our family from the start.
So we made our way around the world and found a little girl who was 37 inches and 39 pounds laughing and energetic and determined affection. Then we brought her home. We were separated for a while and now we are family forever.
You say sir, we are adopted. As we watch the virus quickly reach the earth and as we see that it is more firmly rooted in our own soil, we console ourselves that you have made us your children.
When you look at us, you don't see strangers. You see your sons and daughters. You loved us before we knew you existed. You see our suffering.
Maybe it feels like we're in a foreign country. Isolated and alone, unloved and unprotected and vulnerable to the vagaries of fate. Maybe it feels like our hearts are failing. As if we can't breathe, can't rest, can't find our way to safety.
So we console ourselves, Jesus, that you are a Savior who comes to us. No matter how far we feel from you, we are yours and you are ours. Even if we were on opposite ends of the universe, our cry would somehow reach your ears and you would find your way to us.
And if we leave this place whenever that day is, it will be a day of joy. You will not take us to a foreign country. They will lead us to the house we were always made for.
Apart is temporary. Together is forever. Give us strength in our separation and joy in our community.
The corridor through the sea
The Corridor through the Sea is a series of daily meditations by the President and CEO of Christianity Today, written specifically for those suffering from the coronavirus pandemic. It will address our feeling of fear and isolation, and the way we find beauty and truth and hope – and Christ Himself – in the midst of suffering. The title of the column alludes to the passage of the Israelites through the Red Sea. We are a people who have been released from our slavery to sin, but we live between where we have been and where we should be. There is danger on both sides, but our hope and belief is that God will deliver us through the sea and into the land of promise.
Timothy Dalrymple is President and CEO of Christianity Today. Follow him on Twitter @TimDalrymple_.
The corridor through the sea pillars: