The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. 2 Cor 13:14
To speak of the true self, of personality at all—that is of man as fully human—is to speak of man’s fellowship with God and with others. Even before the Fall, with its catastrophic disruption of all relationships, God said: It is not good for the man to be alone . .” (Gen. 2:18). The poet Milton, commenting on this word, said: “Loneliness is the first thing which God’s eye nam’d not good.” We know ourselves only in relation to God and others. 
The effects of the fall threaten to push us away from God and from one another, but God’s grace, love, and fellowship are stronger. In these days of pandemic-prompted distance and societal strife, we need to drink deeply from the fountains of His grace. He has not left us alone or lonely, and there is no disease or difficulty that can separate us from His love. Let us reach out to Him and to one another and engage in the spiritual fellowship that is ever-present and ever-good.
Gracious Father, we thank You for the immensity of Your love that holds us all. Lord Jesus, we thank you for Your grace that brings us into fullness of life. Holy Spirit, we thank You for the very real fellowship by which You knit us together. Brighten our spiritual eyes and energize our hearts that we might live this day in our full humanity, in relationship with You and with one another.
 Leanne Payne, The Healing Presence (Grand Rapids, Baker Books, 1995), 58.
Stained glass: Gian Lorenzo Bernini, 1660, Dove of the Holy Spirit, St. Peter’s Basilica [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons.
Meditation prepared by Sarah Colyn, drawing on the writings and ministry of Leanne Payne.