For those filled with worry, confusion and anxiety during this COVID-19 Pandemic, this may be of some consolation. Fear is described in dictionary.com as, a distressing emotion aroused by impending danger, evil, pain, etc., whether the threat is real or imagined - the feeling or condition of being afraid. As most of us have found emotions are not to be trusted “solely on their own merit”. For those of us that have been around for a while, we’ve learned emotions can usually cause one to react adversely to a situation. The key to controlling one’s emotions is Godly knowledge and wisdom, which can be easily accessed in today’s world. However, it is extremely important to differentiate the truth, from the half-truths and fake information one will find. The Gospel of John warns us in 1 John 4:1 (NLT), Dear friends, do not believe everyone who claims to speak by the Spirit. You must test them to see if the spirit they have comes from God. For there are many false prophets in the world.
Most state governments have banned gatherings of 11 or more people and a few have dropped that number to 3. This closes almost every church BUILDING that our churches gather in. The emphasis being on “building”, it is the true believers in Jesus who are His church, the building is simply a tool of shelter. Jesus tells us in Matthew 16:17-18 (NLT), 17 Jesus replied, “You are blessed, Simon son of John, because my Father in heaven has revealed this to you. You did not learn this from any human being. 18 Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means ‘rock’), and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it. Jesus built His church on a believer and will multiply it bajillion with a true believers until His return.
As fear grows, logic diminishes, and the human default setting of panic kicks in. Many believers have taken their eyes off Jesus, just as Peter did in Matthew 14:29-30 (NLT), 29 “Yes, come,” Jesus said. So, Peter went over the side of the boat and walked on the water toward Jesus. 30 But when he saw the strong wind and the waves, he was terrified and began to sink. “Save me, Lord!” he shouted. Peter did the impossible, “at least while he was focused on his faith in Jesus,” however once Peter’s focus moved from Jesus to the world of high wind and waves, HE Began Sinking! Why? Because there is power within focus, the brain chooses to overlook everything outside the point of focus. We should ask ourselves, where is my focus during this time of pandemic? Why am I so worried about my personal situation? Where is Jesus? God’s not surprised by all this, as He foreknew of its coming! He tells us in His inspired word of Colossians 3:2 (NLT), Think about the things of heaven, not the things of earth. Obviously, just like Peter, a lot of us also have taken our focus off of Jesus and placed it on the world’s pandemic. 2nd questions answer is found in, Matthew 8:26 (NLT), Jesus responded, “Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!” Then he got up and rebuked the wind and waves, and suddenly there was a great calm. Most of us aren’t finding the calm because of our weak or nonexistent faith in Jesus as our Lord and Savior. We have to get back to God’s basic instructions! The answer to the 3rd question can be found in Deuteronomy 31:6 (NLT), So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.” This attitude of not meeting with Jesus daily to build and strengthen a relationship with Jesus has to end. We have to believe in and fall in love with “Jesus as our Lord” to have the faith He will bring us through. Please! Say this out loud if you will, it’s taken from a song that puts the blame where it belongs, "Not my brother, not my sister, but it’s me, O Lord, standing in the need of prayer." Remembering, “we honor God when we “don’t” worry about things which we’ve turned over to Him!”
My prayer for this week is we focus on Philippians 4:8-9 (NLT), 8 And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise. 9 Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me - everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you. Amen.
PS: Man may have closed the doors to our meeting rooms, but Jesus is still opening the doors to our heart. May we all take comfort in growing our relationship with our Savior Jesus Christ during this time of social distancing!
HAVE A BLESSED WEEK BY BEING A BLESSING TO OTHERS!
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