Last Saturday, Gabe asked if he could spend the night at his friend’s house. I said yes. I asked how many kids were going to be there, but just because I wanted to know. He said most of the freshman football team.

I drove him there. I let the dad show me around the property. I saw the theater room where they were all going to sleep. I made a joke about what that room would smell like come morning.

I never once thought about COVID.

The first kid tested positive Monday afternoon, when those 14 kids were at weight-lifting, baseball, basketball and track. By Tuesday, the host kid was sick and two more had been tested. When Gabe slept until 10 am on Wednesday (he was quarantined from school), I had a sinking feeling. Sure enough, his temp hovered between 99 and 101 all day long and yesterday the test came back positive.

He is the 7th positive from the party.

We have been so careful. I have been loud about those who were not careful. I counted the months of vigilance proudly, and when it came time to vaccinate, you know we did.

In fact, Gabriel got his first shot Saturday morning.

No matter. COVID came anyway, because we were dumb. We didn’t see it through. Like we climbed Mt Everest, but jumped off the Hillary Step.

Yes, the grown ups in our family and circle of friends are all vaxxed and that’s a blessing. But our county is currently rocking a 44% vaccinated rate so there are plenty–too many–unvaccinated folks out there.

I have opinions about their choice to not vaccinate, but I do not want my teenager to carry the weight of someone’s death because he went to a sleepover.

It’s enough that his other friends are mad that because they sat next to him in class on Monday, they have to quarantine–and miss baseball playoffs and track districts this weekend. We had to postpone Annie’s already postponed birthday party and she’s missing her last soccer game. Kate’s friend–whose brother was also at the sleepover–postponed her birthday party. It’s more than the fact that Gabe got COVID–his fever already broke and he feels fine again–but that the implications ripple out and out and out.

We are so, so close to being done. Heading into the big holiday weekend, it will be tempting to throw caution to the wind. I’m saying don’t. Listen to Yogi:


It’s Holy Week and I have this whole thing cooked up in my brain about how THIS Easter in THIS year is going to be the one that brings Revival.

Hear me out.

On the macro, Jesus came here to save us by becoming our sin on the Cross and defeating death.

But also, you know my great belief, influenced by Father Richard Rohr, that the Passion, Death and Resurrection of the Christ are also a roadmap for walking the traumas and dramas of our own lives.

In a nutshell, the bad stuff cannot be avoided because it is impossible to live a trouble-free life. Bad things happen. And also we suck at handling bad things as a people in general, because we don’t like pain or accountability or sacrifice or shame or guilt or sickness or death. So we duck and dodge the bad stuff in our lives, or we set up shop there and never leave, and neither of those options makes for happy healthy humans.

The micro of the passion death and resurrection of Jesus is a road map of how to walk bad stuff: straight through, sisters, eyes and ears open. What has to be done, has to be done. The divorce. The job loss. The cancer. The grieving. The aging. The sobering up. The truth-telling. Have to shoulder the cross and walk it. Have to hang there and suffer. Have to die to what came before. Have to. Otherwise there is no resurrection.

When was the last time the world suffered together? World War 2? Long enough that we forgot the lessons. Long enough that we fought it every step of the way and what did we learn? We’re still here, laying in the tomb, waiting on Sunday.

This week, we want to talk about the Resurrection–the one that saved the world and the one we’re going to experience in the coming months. We didn’t live through COVID to go back to the way things were. We died to that life in March of 2020. If we try for that life again, we’re just coming out of the tomb and climbing back onto the cross.

Think of all the things the Resurrection did for us–how it saved us, freed us, changed everything. Two thousand years later, we are an Easter people.

Now ask yourself–how will you be coming out of COVID saved, freed, changed? How will Easter live in your life?