Top3 for March 13, 2020

Taking a brief break from the Lenten devotions to publish my Top3 for the week. These are a few of the ideas that I’ve read and/or been thinking about recently. I submit them to this space for me mostly. I have found that it helps to write about what I’m reading and thinking about. Of course, this weeks are all focused around what is happening all around us. My prayers remain consistent for you and for those working so diligently to keep us safe and bring a quick end to the outbreak.

#1 – Why Soap Works

I never thought about soap as being something that can unite us. Small, consistent, often overlooked, basic things hold us together. In times like these it is exactly the small and regular parts of life that we long for. It is also the small acts of service that strengthen the bonds of community exactly when needed.

If you are wondering what to do? how can I help? maybe the best things are the simplest and overlooked. Take care of yourself first for starters. We are unable to give what we do not have. The airlines tell us all the time to put our face masks on first and then help others. Helpful advice right now.

#2 – 1987 (22%), 1929 (12%) and (11%), 2020 (9.99%), 2008 (7%)

These are five of the top one day loss percentages on the Dow Jones. Yesterdays downward move was one the worst ever. You’ll notice in 1929 there were two days in a row with drops over 10% and of course 1987 with a eye-popping 22% down in one fell swoop.

I look at these to remind myself that bad days happen. And if we remain calm and focused ahead things do get better in time.

#3 – Perfect love casts out fear. 1 John 4:18

I did a quick interview for the local NPR channel this week and the interviewer asked what I’d say to those who are fearful. I told her that it was my deep belief that perfect love casts out fear. Knowing that God loves us (is committed to helping us thrive) and that God has given us each other to do the very same thing is of great comfort to me. I believe God has equipped scientists and leaders; medical professionals and first responders; neighbors and friends to have the gifts and wisdom to lead us through this. My role, and indeed all of our roles, is first to continually prayer for their success to come quickly and effectively. And secondly to do our part as best we can for as long as is necessary.

Published by Todd Nelson

I'm one of the pastors at First United Methodist Church in Lexington, Kentucky where I've served for the past thirteen years. The sub-title of this blog is "Grace is no accident" which happens to be the defining reality of my life. God's grace (gift) is the reason we have breath in our lungs and hope in our hearts.

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