Thursday, January 21, 2016

Christians in the snow

Hi church - I've seen lots of posts about how to stay safe and get what you need in anticipation of a big snow storm.

Here are a few thrown together thoughts about how you can act out your faith during a snowstorm:

1) If you anticipate you'll have special needs this weekend, let someone know.  This is not the time to be proud.  Loneliness, hunger, thirst, cold - we're all susceptible.  If you're afraid of experiencing one of those during what could be a debilitating snowstorm, let someone know you need to be checked on and cared for.  Email me if you don't know who else to tell.  I'll do my best to get you some care.

2) Call people you know who live alone, who are frail, who might rely on delivery services like Meals on Wheels or grocery deliveries.  Check in on them and make sure they have what they need to get through a couple of days.

3) Elderly or disabled neighbors?  Neighbors with small children who can't be outside in cold for long? Let them know ahead of time that you'll shovel their walks for them.  This will be a huge relief. 

4) Snow days are no fun for a lot of people, including people who won't get paid if they can't get to work, people who don't have enough money for heat, people who have nowhere safe to sleep.  If you are lucky enough to enjoy your snow day, consider giving an extra gift to a local organization that helps people in need.  In our area, Annandale Christian Communities for Action and Bailey's Crossroads Shelter are both worthy places to give. 

5) If church is cancelled, (I'll make the decision on Saturday by noon), use the hour on Sunday morning to pray, read the scriptures and sing.  You can find the texts here. But don't feel the need to be super holy about it.  Snow days are a super-sabbath.  Hang out in your pjs.  Make pancakes and enjoy one another in the name of God!  Sleep in, rest up.

6) Speaking of super-sabbath...don't try to keep up your normal pace and by all means, stay off the roads.    Remember, emergency vehicles still need to get through.

7) Play.  I firmly believe that God smiles when we laugh. If you are in a position to relax during the snow day, get out in the snow and enjoy it. Go for a walk, through a snowball, make a snow angel, take in the wonder of the silent stillness that a big snowfall creates.

Be safe and stay warm - God bless all your days,
Pastor Sarah

1 comment:

  1. Don't forget vulnerable animals during the blizzard, or ever, really. Please keep your pets indoors at all times except for walks. Dress them in cold weather coats if they have them.

    Don't forget that homeless people have pets, too. They will go without so their non-human animal family member can eat. It never hurts to pick up some pet food on sale to have on hand (in your car or tote) if you come across a homeless man/woman with a pet.

    If you own a smart phone please add local animal rescue phone numbers to your contact list in case you see a stray dog or cat at any time of year: Feline Foundation 703-920-8665; Last Chance Animal Rescue 301-274-9409; Washington Animal Rescue 202-726-2556.

    During this downtime at home why not declutter a clothes and linen closet. Set a timer for as little as 5 minutes and have a bag at hand in which to place old sheets, pillowcases, bedcovers, and towels taking up space. Animal shelters always need warm bedding for the animals' cages. Another bag of new (rash shopping) or gently-used clothing items you're never going to wear will be greatly appreciated by homeless or low-income individuals and families. Many gas stations have a collection bin for clothing donations that makes it easy to give.

    Lastly, to all the knitters and crocheters, what more peaceful way to make shelter cage pads, afghans, hats, scarves and mittens for those in need than on a snowy weekend? Choose a favorite or easy pattern, machine-washable yarn and zen out to the sound of clicking needles.

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