This is certainly an interesting season with all of the shutdowns and concerns due to the Corona virus. It has impacted us as well because as of now all of the prisons have closed programs and are not allowing visitors to come is. That means, obviously, that our songwriting workshops are on hold for now. At Larimer County Jail we can still go in, but there the programs are limited to pulling inmates from one pod at a time. That will reduce the size of our workshops significantly. We also had a scheduled concert at Dazzle in Denver, which will now have to be rescheduled once we are in the clear again.
I do not want to assert that this is one of the apocalyptic plagues in the book of Revelation, but here is something to think about. All of those “woes” come upon the Earth to draw people to God. Several times the text in Revelation will say that in spite of the terrible events the people did not renounce their wicked ways and turn to God. In the end, what Jesus is looking for all of the time is for people to respond to his offer of salvation – even after the great tribulations begin.
This is not the great tribulation, but this pandemic has interrupted “normal” life. In that state of interruption, we all have an opportunity to turn to God. I find myself prone to fear and worry sometimes, but I am making the choice to read the Bible more and pray more instead. I am asking him for direction on how to invest my time in these days when the planned activities are on hold.
As far as the ministry of Blues Behind Bars is concerned, there is plenty to do. We are behind on getting recordings of the songs we have written finished and released online, for one thing. This is a good time to work on scheduling outreach events for the rest of the year and for catching up on communication with supporters and team members. All the while, I am wanting to have an ear open towards the Holy Spirit for new direction. Last fall I began to feel in my spirit that a new phase of ministry was coming, maybe this pause in activity will reveal what that looks like.
In every case, those of us who are Jesus’ disciples have an opportunity to be salt and light in this season. Many people are going to go through financial hardships as well as sickness in this season and perhaps the Lord has prepared good works for us to perform in exactly this situation. “Through Jesus, therefore, let us continue to offer to God a sacrifice of praise – the fruit of lips that confess his name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.” Hebrews 13:15,16