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SHEPHERD'S LETTER

His Breath Still Fills Your Lungs

April 2, 2020

What I thought I’d be thinking, doing and preparing for on April 2, 2020 is not my reality now. I think this is a sentence that everyone can say and have it ring true. As someone who appreciates routine and knowing what to expect, this season has hit me hard. Every date that passes on the calendar is filled with reminders of things no longer happening. It can be easy for me to get hung up here, to let the loss and unwanted changes eclipse all else. The challenge that I must choose daily is to see the good God has anew each morning. Two questions I have been regularly asking Jr High students and our young adult volunteers during this time are “what is something you have lost during this time?” and “what is something you have gained?” While listing off losses comes with ease to everyone, naming what has been gained is a challenge to most.

For me, the only consistent way that I can answer the second question — amidst the missed appointments on my calendar, the canceled coffee dates, people I can no longer wrap in a hug — is by looking at Jesus. Praise to the One who is the same yesterday, today and forever in the midst of constant change. Praise to Jesus who is living hope in a world more and more devoid of hopeful news. Praise the God of Creation who causes the sun to still rise, the plants to still bloom and our hearts to still sing His name, even in the darkness. My challenge to students and friends (and honestly to myself, as well) has been this: Lament loss like David did in the Psalms, but anchor yourself daily in the hope and joy that flows with abundance only in our Savior — find Him in the sunset, an encouraging phone call, the spring flowers blooming out your window, in the truth of Scripture and even amidst the mundane — His breath still fills your lungs. Hallelujah!

Becca Stavert

Becca Stavert
Junior High Associate Shepherd