I rejoiced greatly in the Lord that at last you renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you were concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it. Philippians 4:10 (NIV).
Today, show your concern for your fellow man. You know where we are, what’s happening. Our world is in Coronavirus panic right now. God help all those who are infected, sickened, or dying from it. God’s peace to those grieving ones lost to the virus. You and I probably have opinions about the virus and our world’s reactions to it but let’s table those for a few minutes and move on to something more important:
We get to help now. We are the church of the living Christ who wants all mankind to live. Some of our sisters and brothers are in need, and we can do something about it. We get to help and we get to do it in the middle of a worldwide crisis.
Paul would understand this. His world knew pandemics though they didn’t call them by that word. They were just diseases; plagues and pestilences that appeared for reasons they didn’t fully understand. But Paul would understand both praying out of concern AND taking the opportunity to follow through on that concern. Wherever he went, Paul worked to support himself (he was a tent-maker), but he also encouraged the churches he planted to support him and each other through offerings and material support (food, housing, etcetera). It was for their benefit, not his.
He would understand the predicament we’re in and might even echo what I’m saying here. We should indeed keep praying for each other. We should bring those concerns to our living God who hears them and acts in His glorious way. No matter what we’re going through, the peace of God which surpasses all understanding is in us and with us. More people need that.
But let’s take that concern a step further. Let’s not just talk about church: let’s be the church…today. I’ve been challenging Facebook friends to call me for a few days now. If you’re in North Texas, call me if you need help doing anything: running errands, helping you clean, get meds, run kids, whatever. If you need help, message me and I’ll help you.
I’m challenging you to share that same thing. Sure, be prudent and take care of yourself; don’t do foolish things. But beyond that, have faith that our Lord is stronger than some unseen virus and that He will protect us as we help our fellow women and men who need help. Pray first, then lace up your boots and get in the battle. Harder times than these are coming. Get involved. Check on neighbors. Volunteer at a church; check online for groups where you can help, even the Red Cross. Comply with civil guidelines but let’s be bold in Christ. Today; now.
For further reading: Esther 4:14, 2 Corinthians 11:9, Philippians 4:11.
Lord Jesus, show me someone or way I can help today!