“Have faith in God, He’s on His throne,
Have faith in God, He’s watching over His own,
He will not fail, He shall prevail,
Have faith in God, Have faith in God!”
This rousing hymn was going through my mind as Mom and I stood in an actual line to get into Walmart this morning, maintaining our proper “6 feet” of distance from each other. Even though we’re in the same family, apparently we can contaminate each other. Who knew?
Anyways . . . Standing there, in a line with people who are gloved and masked, all you can see are their eyes. And they say eyes are the window to the soul.
If that’s true, what I see troubles me, and saddens my heart.
What I see, in so many people’s eyes, is fear. Panic. Terror. Of the unknown, of the sickness, and ultimately, of death.
These people don’t know what the future brings. They don’t know the One who holds that future. They should be scared, terrified of death — but we, as Christians, shouldn’t be.
We do know the God who created all things.
We do know the One who holds tomorrow.
We do know the God who has ordained everything.
And so we shouldn’t be scared.
Guys, our response, as Christians, should be different from the world. Remember, we are a peculiar people. Always have been, always will be. And this situation should be no different.
Sure, we’re under a state lockdown.
Sure, everyone is “social distancing” which, may I say, is really just “physical distancing”, since we ARE still interacting.
But, as Christians, our response to all these situations should still look different than the world.
Go ahead and be prepared. Stock up on food, toilet paper (if you can find any . . . :D), dish soap, and whatever else. But prepare and stock up with hands wide open. Understand that your neighbor three doors down may be elderly and may be out of bread — and share with her. Share. Prepare for yourself, but share if the need arises.
See, the economic implications of this are going to last a while. While I am so very thankful that my father’s job is considered “essential”, my family knows several people who are “temporarily suspended without pay” from their jobs. They have to provide for their families during this and after this. Are we ready to use the provisions we have to alleviate others needs, even if it means doing with less for ourselves?
This is going to bring out the best and worst sides of humanity, in ways we can’t even fathom. So I challenge you today — act different. Smile at the strangers around you. Talk to the older gentleman in line, who’s essentially been isolated by our society. God created us to be a relational people; to touch and talk and hug and interact with each other. This whole 6-foot-apart thing is unnatural, and everyone knows it.
So let’s be different. God has given us a whole mission field, ya’ll! We are living in a strange land that’s getting even stranger with each passing day — and we never even had to leave the comfort of our own homes. Let’s be the people who are different. Who people look at, and wonder about the hope we have in us and the joy shining in our faces. Let’s laugh and talk and, yes, even sing while going through the store. Let’s be happy, and not sad. Joyful, and not cast down. Yes, wash your hands. Wear a mask and gloves if you must. But let’s let the whole world see that those “Jesus people” aren’t scared, aren’t panicked, and are going on with life.
The Bible commands us not to worry — God provides for the birds. He sustains every living organism and every creature, and He promises He will provide for us. And let’s show the world that we believe that. That we truly believe that all things that happen, good or bad, are a provision from God’s hands alone, and we will praise Him no matter what the day holds. A wise man once said that we preach the truth to ourselves so that when the going gets tough, we can fall back on our reserve. Now’s that time!
Is there a need? Fill it — even if that means you are walking into the home of a person who has the sniffles to wash their dishes or fold their laundry. Bring food to that neighbor who lives by himself. Don’t shun or avoid people, and selfishly cloister away from the sickness in the world. Ask how you can help. Run to the store instead of your elderly friend . . . because that elderly friend is in the “high risk” group, and in all honesty really shouldn’t be out. Those of us who are young and healthy can handle this virus, and maybe it’s time we step up to the plate and face life in a broken world, which includes sickness. Our immune systems will thank us for it later, as they become stronger and build antibodies against this.
Consider that this is a global sickness — perhaps, just maybe, it’s God’s judgement on this world. On this world that has deemed pastors and churches inessential, and goes on murdering babies, because we all know how essential abortions are. Perhaps it’s God’s way of humbling our nation, because we are very, very proud. Maybe the church needs to repent of doing things our own way and turn back to the way worship is ordained in Scripture.
Or maybe — just possibly — God is calling our world to repent.
What if the children being forced out of school shows parents that they *can* educate their children at home? What if parents prefer to home educate their children?
Maybe the children will learn what it’s like to be kids. To laugh and run barefoot through the soft clover, to zip around on bikes, to wade through the brooks and streams, to search for crawdads. Kids are normally in school during this season and don’t get a chance experience the chilly, breezy morning air, and the hot, sweat-filled afternoons.
What if families realize they can survive on one income? And mothers come home and fathers become the main provider once again?
What if, randomly surfing the internet one Sunday, someone comes across a pastor explaining the gospel and the Lord convicts them and saves them? Do you realize how many sermons are online right now? More than ever in the history of the internet, is my guess.
What if families realize that worshiping together is sweet, and continue on? Not neglecting the corporal gathering of the church on Sunday, but what about the other days of the week? Monday through Saturday? What if families gathered together faithfully, every night, and the fathers led their wife and their children, teaching them of Christ?
What if we realize that the fellowship we enjoy each Sunday with other saints is a blessing that we’ve been taking for granted? What if this renews our zeal for worship?
What if we show the world that we truly believe that ALL our times are in the Lords hands, and we trust Him to provide all our needs? What if we slow down and purpose to enjoy the little moments in life? This is a beautiful time of year! Something new is blooming everyday, the world is alive and smelling sweetly of pollen and a deeper earthiness.
So slow down. Take a look at the wonder all around you. Stop and smell the roses, take a moment to marvel at the sunset, and pause to wonder at all the shades of green springing up out of seemingly nowhere.
And be always ready to give an answer for the hope that is within you.
I am a 23 year old young lady who is redeemed and saved from my sin only by the grace of God. A bibliophile at heart with a love of history who desires to see the Word of God practically applied to all aspects of our daily lives -- in our homes, in the grocery store, in the political realm. I strive to put my jumbled, chaotic thoughts down onto paper -- reducing them into black and white rows, letters, sentences. Into some semblance of sanity. And I share them here with all of you, where I can challenge you, make you think, and cause you to ask questions. I am the oldest of eleven children living the country life in the deep south.