Have you heard the idiom if (White)America gets a cold, we (meaning black folks) get the flu. Well America now has a virus, and we’ve got the plague.
When the virus first arrived on our shores, rumors quickly spread that we couldn’t get it. I mean, not many of us percentage wise, were traveling to Asia. But then it hit Tom Hanks, who we love for many reasons, including his performance on Saturday Night Live’s Black Jeopardy. Then it hit Idris Elba and black women everywhere started to take notice.
I’m writing this because the preliminary numbers are staggering. We are dying from the coronavirus at alarming rates. There are many factors involved. We tend to live in more populated areas. We work “essential” jobs. We are less likely to have health care coverage. We are more likely to have pre-existing conditions. But part of it, is that we were not taking this thing seriously.
In my small community, we’ve had two recent outbreaks due to church gatherings. I get it. We love Jesus. He’s who we turn to in times like these. The Bible says where “two or three are gathered,” and yet we insist on having church with 20-200. (Let’s be honest. Most of our churches don’t have 200 in attendance, except, maybe on Easter and Christmas, and for some of our congregations, not even then.) There’s a thin line between faith and foolishness, and we have crossed it! If you knew that having service on Sunday might actually make several of your members physically ill, would it be worth it?
Sunday morning is Easter. There is nothing like Easter Sunday morning in a black church. I usually go to church twice that day. Early morning service at one place, by myself, and 10:00 service at a church across town to see my children perform. None of that is expected to happen this Sunday. I don’t have a new suit. There are no hair appointments to be made. I’m honestly praying that every pew will be empty. The Lord, who gave us Jesus, also gave us sound minds. Let’s use them.