A Note from Travis – January 8, 2021
by Travis Simone on January 08, 2021
Dear Chapel Family,
Thank you for all of your concern for, prayer for, and kind words for me and my family since I wrote to you last Friday. Before I update you on my health, allow me to share a few thoughts on the health of our nation.
In Luke 19 Jesus surveys Jerusalem, the capital city of his day. The city was struggling with lingering insurrectionist sentiment. Remember, the crowds demanded that Pilate release a known insurrectionist named Barabbas instead of Jesus (Mk. 15:7). “And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it, saying, ‘Would that you, even you, had known on this day the things that make for peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes’” (Lk. 19:41-42).
As we look at our capital city over the past several days, may we weep with Jesus. Tears were Jesus’ response. Let that be our response as well. Then, may our lament lead us to repent and pray. Repentance for each moment our eyes have been shut to the things that make for peace. Prayer that our eyes may be opened to know the things that bring God’s people and a nation peace.
The Chapel family prayed for our nation Thursday morning during our digital devotion and prayer. I commend that time to you as a helpful tool to continue the discipline of praying for our country.
As we pray for the health of our nation, I know many in our community, including my family, are struggling with their personal health. While I am still dealing with some of the virus’ symptoms, I am certainly improving and am no longer contagious. Thank you for your prayers.
As I turn the corner, despite our best efforts to isolate me, my family has all tested positive for the virus. Two have symptoms. Three appear to be asymptomatic for now. I am doing my best to move from receiving help frommy family to being helpful for my family. God gave me a tremendous “helper suitable”(Gen. 2:18) in Nina. Her grace and poise has certainly outpaced my own. She continues to be a source of strength, stability, and joy for our family.
As Rich shared on Sunday, God is generous to the point of giving us His very Self in the person of Jesus. When we are generous with others, it reveals God’s generosity to the world. At night, we eat dinner provided by the Chapel family, organized by a member of our small group. Each day the mailman delivers new cards encouraging us. Every time I check my phone, I receive an offer of help and am reminded that people are praying. The generosity of the Chapel family has deepened the Simone family’s experience of God’s generosity in a tough season. We are grateful!
As we contemplate God’s generosity this week, may we consider what gift we can offer our hurting world. Jesus said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God” (Mat. 5:8-9). May we, who have been made sons and daughters of God through Jesus’ peacemaking blood, repent and turn from the impurities of our hearts, and instead turn toward generously sharing “the things that make for peace” with others!
May Jesus’ peace be with you as He uses you to offer His peace to my family, our community, this country, and the world.