The spring of the year 2020 will forever be historic in America. It was in the spring of 2020 that most Americans came face to face with the Corona Virus also known as COVID-19. This highly contagious viral infection has been the reason schools, businesses, daycare centers, movie theaters and even churches have been locked down. Disney has closed all of their theme parks for the first time since opening in 1955.
Supermarkets can hardly keep food on the shelves, especially items such as hand sanitizer, toilet tissue and paper towels. In the midst of all the panic, what is the role of the church? Or of the believer? I have experienced conversations with people who were wondering how is it that houses of worship have gone dark. Why are the doors shut on houses of God? Why are there not enough live streams, prayer calls or videos to offer hope? Very few pastors appear to be reaching out to parishioners during this season and those who are mature in the faith seemed disillusioned while babes in the faith seem bewildered. Everyone is looking for answers and leaders in the body of Christ have a Godly responsibility to nurture the flock in this season. True leaders take situations like a pandemic or other disaster to point people toward the cross; encouraging them to embrace and trust God’s word.
When the panic of recent worldwide events set in, I was immediately compelled to go to the word of God. I made a decision to take comfort in His promises to remain steadfast in the idea that no matter what materialized in our society God will take care of His people. Isaiah 41:10 in KJV reads “Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.” As people of God, we must be the peace that unbelievers see! We must KNOW that God is our eternal peace so that an unsaved world can ask us how can we be at calm in a world gone wild. Isaiah 51:3 says God will “comfort Zion (the church): he will comfort all her waste places;” This means no matter the situations we face or people we encounter the Lord will always bless His people.
The situation we are in due to the COVID-19 virus has compelled us to face the reality of identifying what side we are on with a surety. It is now that the decision to be a person of faith or not lies before us all. Those of us who walk with Christ have to be resilient, confident and sure of who our God is, know that He is fully able to sustain us and understand that the bible points to events such as this unfolding in the last days. Mark 24:7-8 “For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.” These are the times the body of Christ should have been preparing for! We should be the sober voice of reason in this season to offer comfort to those who do not know Christ as Savior during these perilous times. These are the last days… these are the perilous times 2 Timothy 3:1 references. This virus should be the mirror to show us who we are in God, where we are in our relationship with Him and embrace with fervor a passion to see souls be transformed.
Although we cannot predict the end of the Corona Virus outbreak or even others to come, we can rest assured that God’s word is always true. God is speaking to the church through this modern day crisis. We must realize that in the midst of the chaotic environment a fallen world has created, it is our finest hour as a body. Let us strive to get even closer to the cross, go deeper into intercessory prayer and allow God to take us to higher heights in Him. Lastly, let us use this situation to talk to those about salvation even the more in order to assist the lost in finding strength, courage and perseverance that can only come from knowing Jesus.