Wow, so much has changed in our world in the last 4 months. Have you had time to sit back and reflect? How many were sent home from work and in isolation for 6 weeks or more? Did you have a toilet paper shortage in your home? Were jobs lost? Maybe you were able to work from home. How did you juggle work and family?
We were faced with a situation that none of us had experienced or planned for. How have you reacted? How has the world reacted? I see so much fear in the news and on social media. I am so glad I do not have to live in fear. Did you know you have that same relief? Our loving God does not want us to live in fear. We are told in Philippians 4:6, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." Psalms 56:3 tells us, "When I am afraid, I put my trust in you (God)."
There are many more scriptures you can hold on to:
Isaiah 41:10, "So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God..."
Joshua 1:9, " Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go."
Deuteronomy 31:6, "Be Strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you."
COVID did not surprise God. He is all-knowing. Matthew 24:7 even warns us, "For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines, pestilences, and earthquakes in various places." COVID is a pestilence, an epidemic disease. How does God want us to respond when these things occur? Look a little farther down verses 13-14, "But he who endures to the end shall be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come." We are to ENDURE. The definition of endure is to suffer patiently. This means we don't have to panic or to lash out in fear. God tells us, we are to be patient. The other half of that is that our gospel mission is even MORE important than ever! We are to preach the gospel to the whole world. There are so many people right now who have no hope. They see what is happening around us and do not know that what happens on this earth is only temporary. They do not have eternity in heaven to look forward to. We have a responsibility to share that hope with them.
Consider this verse in Romans 8:18, "For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us."
Everything that we go through now will be worth it when we get to heaven. Because there is a purpose in every trial. Even in COVID. James 1:2 tells us, ...count it all joy when you fall into various trials." How do we count the current crisis as joy?! When we keep in mind that God is using these trials to develop our character, then we can praise Him for our suffering. God is working to make us into people who will enjoy eternity with Him. Let him continue that good work in you.
So I challenge you to not live in fear. Trust in God's omniscience. Follow His command to endure and to spread the Gospel message in this trying time.