In the midst of the corona pandemic
These are indeed challenging times on the world scene: businesses are shutting down, economies are being hit, people are falling sick from the corona virus and the whole world is petrified at the thought of: ‘where do we go from here?’.
This whole scenario sounds similar to what happened while Jesus was on earth. He and His disciples had just got into the boat. ‘Suddenly, as they were crossing the lake, a ferocious tempest arose, with violent winds and waves that were crashing into the boat until it was all but swamped’ (Mark 4:37, TPT). His disciples must have felt the exact same way we feel today in the midst of this pandemic: ‘Teacher, don’t you even care that we are all about to die!’ (v. 39)
I guess the questions on the hearts of many are quite similar: our economy is about to die, our health is at risk, our healthcare is getting overwhelmed- DON’T YOU EVEN CARE what is happening to us? Well, could Jesus’s response then be same He would give now? ‘When Jesus woke up, he rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Silence! Be still!” Suddenly the wind stopped, and there was a great calm. Then he asked them, “Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?” Mark 4:39-40 NLTS
The first thing He did was to rebuke the wind and silence the waves. Today, Jesus has given us the same authority with which He rebuked the wind and silenced the waves. Listen to what He said: ‘Behold, I give you the authority to trample on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall by any means hurt you.’ Luke 10:19 NKJV. The authority to speak to and silence the ongoing pandemic has already been given to His church, He won’t come down to do this (Mark 11:23, Matthew 16:19)
The second thing Jesus did was to speak to His disciples’ fear and panic. I believe He is still doing the same today. I agree with Pastor Nathaniel Bassey’s comment on this situation: ‘fear is not okay’. Fear does not come from God and is not of Him (2 Timothy 1:7, 1 John 4:18). Fear is the proof of the absence of faith in God: ‘Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?’. I believe God gives the phrase ‘fear not’, because there might actually be a reason to fear but He calls us to trust His supremacy over the situation.
As the events unfold, let us be assured of God’s presence with us in this storm. Let us use the authority He has given us as His church and let us silence every spirit of fear by building our faith on His precious promises. By all means, let us play our part in preventing the spread of the disease: wash/sanitize your hands frequently, maintain social distance of at least one (1) metre between you and anyone coughing or sneezing, avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth and so on. And let us pray for the healing of those infected and comfort for those who have lost loved ones.
Be safe and meditate on these Scriptures: Isaiah 43:1 and 2, Psalms 91: 1-16 and Proverbs 18:10.