I know this goes without saying, but due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and everything going on right now in our world, things feel scary. They might even feel hopeless. Most of everyone has been in panic mode, grocery stores are empty, people are losing their jobs, the stock market is crashing, and entire cities are shutting down across the globe in efforts to quarantine all of us to let this virus pass. In only a matter of weeks we went from normal everyday living, to an entire new way of living with no idea what things will look like in the future.
So what do we do?
The other day I was talking with my brother and he was telling me how people seem to be showing their true colors during this time. And I think he’s absolutely right. When push comes to shove, when our situations change on us in a heartbeat, when our foundations are stripped away from us, we don’t even have time to think and we simply respond. What we respond with and how we respond to others says everything about us.
What have you found yourself thinking about the most over the past couple of weeks?
What emotions have been coming out of you the most?
Listen I get it, I feel like I’ve had all sorts of emotions come out of me. Fear, anxiety, worry, sadness, joy, anger, back to anxiety, peaceful, back to fear, contentment, then discontentment. For me, they’ve been all over the map with our breaking news changing every 5 minutes it seems. We are overnight having to pave new ways to do life.
I haven’t turned to God as much as I hoped I would. However, when I do turn to Him and remember who Jesus is and what He has done, I’m comforted. I find peace that transcends all understanding. (Philippians 4:7)
I came across this passage out of the Bible the other day and it made me think of exactly the situation we find ourselves in today.
“And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and on the earth distress of nations in perplexity because of the roaring of the sea and the waves, people fainting with fear and with foreboding of what is coming on the world. For the powers of the heavens will be shaken. And then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to take place, straighten up and raise your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.” – Luke 21:25-28
Jesus here was talking about what it would be like when He returned. Not only does He talk about how the world will get worse (being sinful as it is with sinful people as we are), but how people will be fainting in fear, how things will get very intense and when these things begin to take place, that we can straighten up…and raise our heads…because our redemption is drawing near.
I’m not counting out the pain that’s actually taking place here in our world. People are dying, people are in financial hardship, people are truly scared. But I don’t think this passage invalidates real feelings, but rather, gives us hope.
And hope is something we need right now. Not another breaking news article with a negative message, but a different messages. We need good news. And Jesus has given us good news.
“But you, O Lord, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head.” -Psalm 3:3
God is the lifter of our head. When times are tough, He’s there to pick us up. When we look down, He’s there gently lifting our head. Telling us to stand straight, be firm, find peace, let joy carry us through even the darkest of times. There’s good news while we watch everything crash around us being reminded that Jesus truly is steadfast. He doesn’t change. He is someone who we can truly trust and will never let us down.
Our hope isn’t found in our health. Our hope isn’t found in our finances. Our hope isn’t found in our jobs. Our hope isn’t found anywhere except in Jesus Christ.
These are the times when God shows His faithfulness the most. When we come to Him helpless. When we come to Him with our hands held high saying “I’m yours.” The reminder is here for the followers of Jesus to straighten up and raise our heads. And for those who don’t follow Jesus, to believe and put your faith in Him and raise your head if even for the first time.
May we be a people that truly shine like a light when our circumstances are the darkest. To show people the love of Christ in how we love others well. To truly lead people to life in Jesus.
“You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.” – Psalm 16:11