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This morning I awoke to a cacophony of birdsong! The sun was up early (or so it seemed) and the birds appeared to have found their voice. Together, they announced a new day. And so it was in the human neighborhood last night. Announcements all over the airwaves were proclaiming the good news: a congressional bill that would favor the needy and allow people to lift themselves out of poverty, as well as three vaccines showing themselves capable of giving us permission to feel a physical connection. Holding hands was once again a promise, even hugging for those vaccinated would be allowed! The relief and joy in the voices and words of the reporters was visceral and came right through the screen to free us from our sad loneliness after almost exactly a calendar year of “social distance” from one another.

We are still asked to be vigilant as we celebrate success. It is so easy for euphoria to erase any attention to care or caution. But today is a day for a new song…a joy-filled anthem of gratitude for the creativity and sharpness of mind to find a vaccine, of the willingness to move forward for the good of the whole. It is happening. As we rejoice we ought to pause and ask ourselves and one another:

What have we learned from this dark time? What are the lessons that will take us into a new moment of care for the world? Where does compassion lie for those who have seemingly lost everything? How can we add our portion of light to the dawning day? And most of all, how will we express our gratitude to the God whose love for us is everlasting…