Sunday: the second of Lent in the second year of lockdown

It is Sunday, and Kea tells me church is online today. Last night, late, the country was moved to level 3 Alert in Auckland -- functional lockdwon -- and level 2 in the rest of the country -- social distancing. The services were planned forSunday, and we can't turn to socai distanced 100 person meetings overnight. This is power: Lockdowns don't work. (Aquamarine does)

There are consequences. The son in Auckland tells be, bluntly, to put a fork in it. It'sdone He's looking at moving elsewhere as soon as he can. My parents are now continually prepared for a week or two at home.

This is the new normal, and it is not sustainable. From that libertarian globalist, David Seymour.

“Unfortunately ACT predicted tonight’s plunge back into Level 3 lockdown for Auckland and the rest of New Zealand into Level 2,” says ACT Leader David Seymour.

“I said yesterday the South Auckland cluster wasn’t under control. It wasn’t. There have been too many cases popping up randomly for the Government to be as confident as it was. We were a sitting duck, praying for luck.

“Since August ACT has been regularly calling for a complete re-set of our approach to tackling coronavirus. Instead, the Government was busy congratulating itself. It has an attitude problem.

“There has been no significant improvement to our defences since the second lockdown, but the impact of this fourth lockdown will be so much worse.

“Despite the many support packages in place the disruption of lockdown cripples businesses. Cafes that just got going after the third lockdown will have to dump several days stock, because they got only nine hours’ notice of the fourth.

There are more than material issues here, or health issues. The bigger issue is despair, a sense of mistrust. That we will not know that the rules are the same for a while. Kea said last night that this is the tipping point into depression for many. Economically, and spiritually. But that is what we pray does not happen.

For we were not promised prosperity, but salvation.

COLLECT ONE

Almighty God,
who seest that we have no power of ourselves to help ourselves;
Keep us both outwardly in our bodies,
and inwardly in our souls;
that we may be defended from all adversities
which may happen to the body,
and from all evil thoughts
which may assault and hurt the soul;
through Jesus Christ our Lord.

The daily mail (UK) has Ardern blaming the victims for being non compliant with advice: continuing to train. Despite being youg and asymptomatic, he was expected to stay home for two weeks/ Most people in Auckland have high rents, and they need to work to pay them.

Auckland's new restrictions are in response to a new locally-transmitted case Ms Ardern said could not be directly connected to other positive tests over the last two weeks, although a school in South Auckland was a common link.

The infected man, 20, went to the GP for a Covid test on Friday afternoon but then went to the gym - which Ms Ardern said was 'frustrating'

Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern (pictured) has announced Auckland will go into lockdown for one week, after just one new local case of Covid-19

'People who should have been in isolation, weren't,' she said of the country's recent outbreak in February.

'Unfortunately, we have still had breaches of requirements in this case.'

Auckland's latest cluster is centred around Papatoetoe High School, and the new case is the older brother of a student at that school.

The mother of the siblings has also tested positive for Covid-19.

However, Ms Ardern said that student has tested negative for coronavirus multiple times.

'That means we have no current known link for the case discovered this afternoon,' she told the media on Saturday afternoon.

'If we cannot immediately link a case person to person, what we call it an epidemiological link, that is a significant issue, and one we need to act on.'

The rest of the country will face tightened public gathering rules under Level Two restrictions.

The NZ press are not reporting this. As in times when we were a fortress socialis5 state under Rob Muldoon we have to look outside of the nation to find out what is going on inside.

In these times we have to live by faith, and not by sight. It looks bleak, but there is still the promises of God. This is a season.

Genesis 17:1-7

17 When Abram was ninety-nine years old the Lord appeared to Abram and said to him, “I am God Almighty; walk before me, and be blameless, 2 that I may make my covenant between me and you, and may multiply you greatly.” 3 Then Abram fell on his face. And God said to him, 4 “Behold, my covenant is with you, and you shall be the father of a multitude of nations. 5 No longer shall your name be called Abram, but your name shall be Abraham, for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations. 6 I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make you into nations, and kings shall come from you. 7 And I will establish my covenant between me and you and your offspring after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your offspring after you.

We must consider all evil things, even the passions which war against us, to be not our own, but of our enemy the devil. This is very important. You can only conquer a passion when you do not consider it as part of you.

St. Nikon of Optina

I made a comment to Kea this morning, as I was reading out the information I was Finding, that there could be babies out of this lockdown. She said that people will not be able to afford them. She's right: in times of despair the nation does not conceive. It is where there is a future that babies are born.

In Christ there is a future.

Romans 4:13-25

13 For the promise to Abraham and his offspring that he would be heir of the world did not come through the law but through the righteousness of faith. 14 For if it is the adherents of the law who are to be the heirs, faith is null and the promise is void. 15 For the law brings wrath, but where there is no law there is no transgression.

16 That is why it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his offspring—not only to the adherent of the law but also to the one who shares the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all, 17 as it is written, “I have made you the father of many nations”—in the presence of the God in whom he believed, who gives life to the dead and calls into existence the things that do not exist. 18 In hope he believed against hope, that he should become the father of many nations, as he had been told, “So shall your offspring be.” 19 He did not weaken in faith when he considered his own body, which was as good as dead (since he was about a hundred years old), or when he considered the barrenness of Sarah's womb. 20 No distrust made him waver concerning the promise of God, but he grew strong in his faith as he gave glory to God, 21 fully convinced that God was able to do what he had promised. 22 That is why his faith was “counted to him as righteousness”. 23 But the words “it was counted to him” were not written for his sake alone, 24 but for ours also. It will be counted to us who believe in him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, 25 who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification.

We need to stop thinking we can control things. We have an elite who are fools, true. But they were given to us, not as a blessing, but a punishment. We still have to do what we are commanded to do: to love the people of God as Christ did, and love God with all our heart and soul and mind.

And our neighbours? We do to them as we want them to do to us. Which is general, means leave us alone.

Mark 8:31-38

31 And he began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again. 32 And he said this plainly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 33 But turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”

34 And calling the crowd to him with his disciples, he said to them, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 35 For whoever would save his life[a] will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel's will save it. 36 For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? 37 For what can a man give in return for his soul? 38 For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him will the Son of Man also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”

Didact here gives us some hope, and in particular reminds us that the micromanagement of risk is not what God is about. Christ took lethal risks, knowing that he would die for the sins of us all. Peter could not see this. It appeared crazy.

But without the cross there is no salvation. I would argue that fear is the enemy of joy.

The days are getting longer. The Sun is out and shining. And the very first official day of spring is right around the corner. Eventually, even Boris the Oppressor will be graciously pleased to permit his slaves subjects fellow blithering idiots citizens to go back to work, gather in public places, eat in restaurants, and go to the gym. He and his coterie of aristocratic morons enlightened benevolent rulers will no doubt reinforce the lockdowns the moment that it becomes convenient, of course. But, in these straitened days, we must take what freedoms we can, and guard them jealously.

The guardianship of freedom is, of course, something at which the British are notoriously poor in upholding. That is why their country is breaking down before our very eyes. This is not immediately obvious to anyone who does not live here. But if you keep an eye out for the signs, they could not be clearer. People simply do not trust each other anymore. The Branch Covidians run around wearing full hazardous waste masks – I actually saw a woman in the centre of the city wearing, I shit you not, a proper gas mask. And people like me, who actually like breathing clean and free air, walk around refusing to wear one.

We’ve gotten to the point where “to wear or not to wear, that is the question”. The fearful and timid among us believe that by wearing masks, we may perhaps avert the Kungpocalypse. Those of us who accept that life has risks and rewards, though, understand that wearing a thin layer of paper and cloth over your face is nothing more than a cosmetic statement.

The left wanst you in fear and axiety, doing their breathing apps (which you will pay for: either directly or by taxation). Truth and risk assessment is called radicalization.

But we are not called by Christ to fear. We are called to love. Lord, enable us to do this: our elite want to regulate and enforce and instill fear. That ends poorly.

Instead, may this crisis bring revival.

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Amy
Amy
5 months ago

From the Land of Eternal Lockdown: At the park this morning, I observed two parties setting up, and 2/3 of the people I met on my stroll with the dog were unmasked. I can’t go to dinner with my hubs (he doesn’t like the rule-breaking my county is countenancing) but the sun is shining… and MOST of the crazy people seem to be in my combox, not in the wild.

We’re figuring out how to smile when mask requirements are mandatory (aka grocery stores) and being a little bit extra friendly when they aren’t.

Everyone when asked about it (and it is STILL the #1 topic of conversation) is much grumpier than they seem to be when encountered IRL. That’s odd. Maybe we think we’re supposed to be?

The rules suck and have nasty consequences (I have a teenager and YES this is awful for them) but we keep on going even so. We’re not happy about it, but we keep moving.