This is Pastor Tim’s article that appeared in the Evening Leader on Monday, March 1, 2021
Last Monday, I received the second COVID vaccine. I didn’t have any trouble with either shot. About 7 hours after getting the second shot, I had a little cold fever sweat. After a good night’s sleep and I have felt fine ever since. No lie, my arm was the worst part, and it was still sore on the injection site 2 days later.
I want to thank Otterbein for inviting me over for the vaccine as a part of their program to protect the residents there from people who are coming in to visit. I appreciate them including me, and I am glad the vaccine is now behind me. By the time this article is published in the paper, I will be 7 days out from the vaccine, so it is in full effect. I am looking forward to being able to visit parishioners from Wayne Street, many of which I have not seen in quite some time.
A few days ago, I went with the Council on Aging here in town to deliver lunch to 16 seniors in Auglaize county. I want to thank Danielle for chauffeuring me around that day. I lead a Monday morning devotion time with some residents who call in, and I actually got to meet a couple of those nice folks by participating. It was great to put faces with their voices.
It has been so nice to be able to start seeing the possibility of coming back together. I know there will still be quite some time before everyone feels safe enough to get back out, but just the chance to see people and have conversations was quite the blessing.
I know there are a variety of opinions about the vaccine, and I cannot deny there is a lot of unknown with getting it. The reason the vaccine was the right choice for me is because even though I am not in the at-risk demographic, I interact with a whole lot of people who are at risk for a variety of reasons. It was my decision that I owed it to them to protect them. I am not advocating either way on whether you should or shouldn’t get the vaccine. I am only saying that I am in favor of vaccination in order to protect the most vulnerable and frightened among us.
We as a nation have certainly endured seasons much worse than what this past year has been, but this past year has been the hardest of my lifetime. I never believed I would live to see the day we would have government-enforced shutdowns for a year! I am not making any statement for or against the lock down, but just the fact that it happened is something I never thought I would see. I am a firm believer that we have come to the point that we as a nation need to weigh the risk against the benefit of continued lock downs.
This belief is what also made the vaccine the right choice for me. The vaccine represents the first aggressive response to COVID since this nightmare started, and when I was offered the chance, I jumped on it. I want to get back to the time when we could see each other’s faces. Now I go to Kroger, and no one smiles at me. It is my belief that the social effects of this past year will be felt much longer than the fear of COVID.
Today is March 1. This month, we will celebrate the first day of spring. I pray that this summer will be the dawn of a new time in our world. A time when we can start being a community and a world together again. No more isolation, no more fear, no more separation, and no more worthless political fights. Let’s go watch our kids play baseball, take a walk down the tow path, and sit in a pew on Sunday morning. Many of you have already made this choice, and I pray that many more of you will in the weeks to come. After everything that has happened, we need some togetherness. I am fully committed to do my part to give our community the chance to be together. I pray that the same can be said of you.
Besides, there is an incredible holiday coming the first Sunday in April that is all about grace and new beginnings, and you wouldn’t want to miss that!