Great Plains Daily Devotional for 2/7/2021

Today please be in prayer for

Sterling, KS: First UMC
Hutchinson District
Macksville Grace UMC
Trousdale UMC
Hutchinson District
First Presbyterian Church of Wilson
Wilson UMC
Hutchinson District
District Superintendent
Kansas City District

Today's Lectionary Text

Galatians 5:14

All the Law has been fulfilled in a single statement: Love your neighbor as yourself.

Today's Devotional

Last week I was one of 700 in my county who were privileged to receive the first of two vaccination injections for COVID-19 through our county health department. I have very mixed emotions about having been selected as one of those recipients. I registered on the health department website because I am one of many over the age of 65 with multiple immune issues that put me at high risk. Frankly, I did not really expect to be one of those 700. But I was selected, and my first reaction was jubilation that my long wait was nearing its end.
But then reality settled in my mind and my heart. Yes, I was blessed to be one of this group and I am thankful that I was in that number. But there are somewhere in the area of 12,000 senior citizens with compromising issues in my county. Not all of the 700 fit into this category. Some who received the call have situations which put them into close contact with those who are ill or whose work puts them in close contact. That reduces the number of seniors with compromising health issues to somewhere below 700 who received the first round.
In other words, there are a lot of people who should be in line for the vaccine who are way down the list for future distributions. And that does not necessarily include those from other populations at a high risk for contracting COVID. The questions raised in my mind and my heart are these: Why are some singled out to receive the vaccine before others? Should I have waited until others in high-risk populations who are without the advantages I have are offered the vaccine? Am I truly living out the instruction given to us repeatedly in Scripture to “love your neighbor as yourself” when I get to go to the front of the line?
Sure, I can justify my early place in the line by saying that every person vaccinated is one less person who will spread the virus to others. I also understand that vaccine supplies are not being distributed as rapidly as anyone might wish, so there has to be some kind of plan for distribution – and it makes some sense to offer it to those at high risk first. But the reality is that while I am at high risk due to a compromised immune system there are a lot of people in this county who are at high risk due to the fact that they live in poverty or simply do not have the advantages some of us have. Which leads me to ask if I am loving my neighbors as much as I love myself.
Ultimately, I chose to have the vaccination. But I continue to consider the question – and wonder how we who follow Jesus might find ways to make this situation a teaching moment for society at large.
--Rev. Robbie Fall, Retired Elder

Prayer for Reflection

Open our eyes, O God, to see the injustice around us. Open our hearts to love as you love us. Amen.


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