When I first heard the term “Social Distancing” I cringed. I’m the guy who has spent a life waving at, high fiving, speaking to, smiling at, and hugging almost everyone I met. However, my love of science and my experience as a first responder impressed upon me the seriousness of the current virus (pandemic). I have tried to encourage everyone to use the term “Physical Distancing” instead. It is imperative that we remain social and connected even during times we are physically separated.
The spoken word is enormously powerful. Words are like a small bit that turns a huge horse or a small rudder that turns a giant ship (James 3:1-12). The Psalmist said to “keep watch over the door of my lips (Ps. 141:3). The phrase “Social Distancing” is the opposite of what we need. We do need to protect each other and be responsible by keeping our “distance” but only physically, not socially. Now, more than ever, we need to strengthen our social and spiritual connections. Humans are social and spiritual beings, whether we realize it or not.
Another person born in Alabama, Hellen Keller, said, “Always together, never apart, maybe in distance, but never in heart.” Paul the Apostle wrote the Colossians, “For though I am absent from you in body, I am present with you in spirit.”(Colossians 2:5).
The famous Mizpah in Genesis 31:49 states, “May the Lord watch between me and thee while we are absent one from the other.” Never have we needed our mutual connection and support as much as now. Never have there been as many technological means to facilitate that happening as now. Find a twelve-year-old to teach you and get busy connecting. Please stay close while (6 feet) apart!
Darryl R. Peebles
[Darryl is pastor at Historic Providence Christian Church on North Main Street in Graham. He publishes encouraging nuggets on a You Tube channel each day called DAILY DOSE OF DARRYL. Simply go to YOUTUBE.COM and search for it. It is free and can be subscribed to with notifications when new material is posted. ]