Summertime brings back happy memories of running through the neighborhood with my friends. We were free to ride bikes, play red rover or hide and seek or whatever we wanted as long as we were home for lunch, home for dinner, and in when the streetlights went on. I loved it.
Suddenly everything changed when my dad, who was Army, got stationed in Alaska. In the land of the midnight sun, the ever-faithful streetlights gave no warning that it was time to head for home. Dad’s solution was simple, a bosun’s whistle. To say that this amazing whistle could be heard throughout the neighborhood is an understatement! It never failed. It didn’t matter where we were, we heard it. Everyone heard it, our friends, their parents, even the moose in the nearby woods! We quickly figured out how to get home without being called.
As Christians, we have heard the call to “Come unto Jesus,” and have started on the gospel path. Traditionally, we would gather for weekly support through gospel lessons, messages, and hymns. However, today many of us are “Homebound Christians.”
For the past few months we have had a different kind of spiritual journey. Thankfully we have technology to help us. However, the weight of isolation and the strain of being homebound can be emotionally and spiritually crippling.
This sheds new light on Amos’ prophecy “Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord. (Amos 8:11)
Still, the Savior calls, “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart and ye shall find rest unto your souls. (Matthew 11:28 and 29) We may feel distanced from the Savior at this time, but his call, like the bosun’s whistle, can be heard wherever we are. Elder Jeffrey R. Holland reminds us “However many mistakes you feel you have made …, or however far from home and family and God you feel you have traveled, I testify that you have not traveled beyond the reach of divine love. It is not possible for you to sink lower than the infinite light of Christ’s Atonement shines.”
It is necessary to keep moving along the gospel path. This hiatus from our normal church meetings and support is not a reason to sit idly by until “everything blows over.” We must take more responsibility for our spiritual progress.
Just because you are a Homebound Christian is no reason to suffer from spiritual malnourishment. We know that “It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.”(Matthew 4:4) It is up to you to make sure you are getting the spiritual nourishment that the word of God gives. Whether you are homebound or back at church, your spiritual strength will thrive as you prioritize daily scripture study and meaningful daily prayer. You are a beloved child of God, and he calls to you, “Come unto me.”