I have had several conversations over the last few days with people who were expressing their worries and concerns. I truly sympathize with their plight, and my heart go out to them. Some are losing their jobs, some are worried about their business, and some are just fearful about the future. I share their concerns and worries.
Despite our worries and concerns, I would like to offer some words and encouragement. There are a few things I am keeping in mind for my family’s situation that may be helpful to you.
- Stay focused –During the COVID-19 pandemic, we must remember who is in control. God is sovereign and in complete control. This pandemic did not take him by surprise. As Charles Spurgeon said, “The sovereignty of God is a soft pillow on which weary people lay their heads. J.I. Packer offers an excellent reminder for us to acknowledge God’s sovereignty and bring our needs to God in prayer. He states,
Because I know that, if you are a Christian, you pray; and the recognition of God’s sovereignty is the basis of your prayers. In prayer, you ask for things and give thanks for things. Why? Because you recognize that God is the author and source of all the good that you have had already and all the good that you hope for in the future. This is the fundamental philosophy of Christian prayer. The prayer of a Christian is not an attempt to force God’s hand, but a humble acknowledgment of helplessness and dependence. When we are on our knees, we know that it is not we who control the world; it is not in our power, therefore, to supply our needs by our own independent efforts. Every good thing that we desire for ourselves and for others must be sought from God, and will come, if it comes at all, as a gift from His hands.
- Stay encouraged– Is there anything more encouraging than God himself taking the time to comfort you and me? He does that so that we can pass on that encouragement to others. 2 Cor. 1:3-4 says. “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” Allow God to encourage you through His Word and prayer. Fellowshipping with God this way, will encourage your soul.
- Stay connected –Right now, global health experts are calling people to engage in “social distancing,” so they don’t get sick and slow and reduce the spread of infection. With this predicament, it would be easy to retreat into our homes and just watch church online. However, the Bible encourages us to stay connected to the body of Christ. Either use video technology, or a phone call, but stay connected with your brothers and sisters in Christ.
- Stay true –God said that he would never leave us nor forsake us. (Heb. 13:5). This verse is a verse that I have been meditating on all day, particularly the word placed in the middle – NEVER. No matter what our situation may look like now, God will never leave us and will be working on our behalf.