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2020 Here I (Don't) Swap Coronavirus

How are you doing? Really. How ARE you?

Got enough Clorox wipes? Audible books for the kids? Hamburger in your freezer? 

Is the sun shining at your house? Are your parents ok? Is your Internet connection keeping up?

How are your pastor and his family? Are you still doing family devotions? Reading sermons? Tuning in to your church or other LCMS congregations' live streams? 

I know you all have adorable mugs. But how is your chocolate supply? IS THERE ENOUGH COFFEE IN YOUR PANTRY?

Those are the questions I'd ask if we could sit down over nachos and Pepsis at the local Mexican restaurant (this is a bad time to be having pregnancy cravings, can we all agree?), but since we're all homebodies at the moment, I've got another question for you:

Do you want to take part in a mug swap . . . that doesn't involve mugs? 

These are tricky times, times that require patience and kindness and grace from all of us, and especially from we Lutheran women who know and confess Jesus Christ, full of compassion and truth. So what do you say we share some of that Christian care and concern around, focusing on others instead of ourselves at a time when so many want to believe they are ultimately in control? 

Are you in? 

Yes! I knew you were!

Here's how the 2020 Here I (Don't) Swap Coronavirus swap works:

1) I'm going to pair you up with another Lutheran gal. You'll exchange names and emails. No physical addresses. Your first job is to shoot her an email, see how she's doing, ask how you can pray for her, be a listening ear, start a friendship, and ask her what to do with all the Rotel and graham crackers in your pantry that you need to use up. She's going to do the same for you! This works great for extroverts, who need someone to talk to, and introverts, who can interact from a safe distance and at their own pace.

2) You're going to spend at least $5 on one another (more if you want but no less than $5), but here's the catch: 

You're going to do something on her behalf that helps our church body and her congregations or organizations and can all be done online
  • a $5 online donation to her favorite LCMS organization (like LCMS Life Ministry or LCMS Soldiers and Veterans of the Cross), 
  • a $5 online gift card to Starbucks for her pastor who is probably burning the midnight oil calling to check on her and others, 
  • a $5 online donation to her church's local food pantry or crisis pregnancy center, etc. 
I've supplied some other options at the survey link you'll find below. If you've got another LCMS-related idea, like giving directly to your home congregation or the like, feel free to share it with your swap buddy. The goal here is to think of others -- especially our fellow Lutherans and our Lutheran church workers.

3) Done! You get to meet and care for a Lutheran gal experiencing some of the same shared crosses as you AND you get to serve our beloved church and her people along the way. No exchanging physical mail. No Clorox wiping down your laptop. Just showing compassion in some of the only ways we can right now. 

Are you ready?  

  I'll start sending mug swap buddies out as fast as I'm able. Registration will close Friday, March 27, 2020.

I know you know this, but it doesn't hurt to be reminded: The Church is primed for times like these. We live each day knowing that our heavenly Father orders our days, not us. We rest in the assurances that Christ offers. We don't panic. We're shrewd, but we're not afraid. This is where we have a chance to thrive as children of God: confessing Christ and His comfort and peace in a world feeling panicked and out of control.  

So let's look out for one another, check in on our pastors, pray for our friends, laugh at the antics of our children and the funny memes online, get off Facebook and read a book, and then not forget to do all these things over nachos and Pepsis at the local Mexican restaurant when the world is a little more back to normal. Deal?


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