Let’s Look on the Brighter Side!
The COVID-19 crisis can help us, if we look on the brighter side. If you are like me, you want to find some kind of silver lining in the COVID-19 crisis. Certainly, there are tons of tragedies from the coronavirus outbreak, with many more to come. If we dwell on these problems, we won’t sleep well at night, and we’ll be gloomy during the day. We can count on the news media to give us 24 hour depressing coverage of the tragedies. We need some encouragement, so this is my attempt to provide some.
I always try to find the positive so that I practice 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “In everything give thanks, for this is God’s will.” When I do so, I find I am much more content and joyful. This is not the same as pretending there is no problem, but changing my focus to look beyond the tragic and onto the hopeful.
If you like the sound of that, then read on. If you prefer to be gloomy, turn on your TV!
Five ways the COVID-19 crisis can help us:
1. The COVID-19 crisis can help us realize how much we need Jesus for eternal salvation.
In the midst of everyday sameness, it is easy to forget that we are ALL going to die one day. The COVID-19 crisis might hasten our death, but it doesn’t change the fact of death.
As I understand it, most people will get the virus at some point. And for most it will be no more than an annoyance, like a common cold or flu. But the enhanced risk for the vulnerable is causing all of us to contemplate our eventual death and eternity.
For the Christian, the worst that can happen—death, is actually the best that can happen. We don’t have a death wish. We simply agree with the Apostle Paul who wrote, as he eagerly anticipated our heavenly home, “For to me to live is Christ and to die is gain.” (Philippians 1:21)
Click HERE to learn how to be sure of your eternal salvation.
2. The COVID-19 crisis can help us focus on family
While all of us are to some degree “quarantined,” it’s a great opportunity to focus more on our families. Let’s take advantage!
Yesterday evening at the Williams’ residence, we played a table game, which is something that doesn’t usually happen on a weekday evening. It happened because of our coronavirus seclusion.
Too bad it sometimes takes a crisis like this to prompt more family time.
It occurred to me that although we don’t know how long it will last at this point, the break we are taking is similar to what many Europeans do every summer. They shut down during August and go on a long break.
By law, every country in the European Union has at least four work weeks of paid vacation. In contrast, according to USA Today, one in four Americans doesn’t have a single paid day off. I’m not saying we need to become European in every way. I am saying that some of us might need more work/family balance. Now is perhaps a good time to begin to achieve that.
3. The COVID-19 crisis can help us get better prepared.
Most safety devices are created after a tragedy occurs. I wish it were not so, but it is.
We wear seatbelts because of all those killed when they were thrown out of cars.
We have smoke and CO2 detectors because people have died.
We put fences around pools because children have drowned.
There is no doubt that we will learn from this tragedy. If we are smart, we’ll implement safety measures that will make us better prepared for the next crisis.
Who would have thought a few months ago that we would go into stores and find the shelves empty? If someone said, “Within 3 months you will not find basic items in the stores such as toilet paper,” we would have labeled them a kook.
I’m not going to hoard TP, but I will probably, when this is over, resupply our family’s stores of emergency food and water.
“Lazy people should learn a lesson from the way ants live. 7 They have no leader, chief, or ruler, 8 but they store up their food during the summer, getting ready for winter.” (Proverbs 6:6-8 Good News Version)
4. The COVID-19 crisis can help us trust the Lord.
After my last point, you might think I’m simply going to be prepared with worldly preparations. However, I actually believe the most important preparation is spiritual fortification.
“Some nations boast of their chariots and horses, but we boast in the name of the LORD our God.” (Psalm 20:7 NLT)
I’m currently reading The Autobiography of George Mueller. It is amazing. He founded five orphanages that cared for two thousand orphans a day. In over 63 years of work, his ministry fed, clothed, and educated more than 120,000 orphans!
What is most astounding is that he did so without ever asking for donations. He simply trusted God to provide as he prayed. Many prayers were answered in the same hour or day that he prayed. He kept detailed records of the miracles of provision in his autobiography.
If God can provide for 120,000 orphans through Mueller, simply by prayer, can’t he provide for you and me as we pray?
“Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. 23For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. 24Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! 25Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? 26Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?” (Luke 12:22-26 NIV)
5. The COVID-19 crisis can help us get unfinished projects done!
Since we’re not going out as much, we have opportunities to do things we normally (think) we don’t have time for.
Instead of staying glued to the TV, let’s do something constructive! A great idea is to work on discipleship!
As I write, our son Gabe is home from work. So later today we’re planning to do another Discipleship Journeys with Jesus discipleship study together.
You can do the same—they are all available without charge online. To get all the free discipleship lessons from Discipleship Journeys with Jesus, go to djjministry.org and click where it says “START YOUR JOURNEYS HERE.”
By the way, this blog is one of the projects I am able to get to now. The first three months of this year I have been extraordinarily busy with travel to Africa and Asia. This has caused a break in my blogging. But now I’m back on it.
What will you accomplish that you haven’t had time for? Please share your thoughts.
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