Hope for today


By the Rev. David Chivington - Your pastor speaks



My wife told me to write about anything but the COVID-19. She is more than tired about reading about it, hearing about it, talking about it, and living with it. Frankly, so am I. Let us talk about baseball. Wait, we can’t because the virus has shut everything down. There are no games to talk about. This is just the strangest thing ever. It has messed with every part of our life and with everything we do. It is no surprise that we are really tired of coping. We just want to return to our old normal.

By now, it is difficult not to feel the stress of the isolation and all the shutdowns. The more we focus on it all the more we stress. The more we stress the more it gets the best of us. I want to offer this idea to take our minds off the virus and give us something positive for our thoughts. “God is good all the time. All the time God is good.” We say that often at our church. I hope you haven’t forgotten how good God is. When we forget how good God is we tend to lose hope.

To quote another pastor, Rick Warren , Anticipating God’s goodness is the foundation of all hope. We can’t have hope unless we believe God is good—and will be good in the future. If God isn’t good, we have no rational, logical reason for hope.

It is easy to forget God’s goodness when things are going badly. When people are sick, when prayers are not answered to our satisfaction, when we struggle to pay the bills, when we are frightened about our future, we can easily forget God loves us and wants us to experience a rich and full life. Jesus told us that he came to give us life in abundance. “I have come that they may have life and have it to the full.” (John 10:10) Perhaps it is helpful to recall all that God wants for us.

God will meet your needs!

“The LORD is my shepherd; there is nothing I lack” (Psalm 23:1 HCSB). Because God is good, you don’t need to worry about any of your needs. Reread Matthew 6:25-34 if you’re struggling. It will remind you that worry is useless and unnecessary.

God will give you peace when you’re stressed out!

God’s goal for you is peace. Peace I leave you; my peace I give to you. (John 14: 27 NIV) Give God your worry and stress. Seek God’s peace.

God will give you guidance when you’re confused!

God has given us His Holy Spirit to be our Counselor. (John 14:25 NIV) The word used here means someone who comes along side of us. God will help us know what is true and helpful. Trust his guidance. Good and upright is the Lord; therefore, he instructs sinners in his ways. (Psalm 25:8 NIV)

God will always be with you!

Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” (Hebrews 13:5) God doesn’t abandoned us. If God is with us, it doesn’t matter who, or what, is against us. Lay claim to the nearness of God.

God will one day take you to heaven!

Jesus is the only way to eternal life. Our promise is that if we believe in Him we shall experience life everlasting. Whoever lives and believes in me will never die. (John 11:26 NIV)

We have had many things taken away from us these past days. Our hope in God should not be one of those things. God is good all the time. All the time God is good. Don’t lose this hope.

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By the Rev. David Chivington

Your pastor speaks

The writer is the senior pastor at Sidney First United Methodist Church, Sidney.

The writer is the senior pastor at Sidney First United Methodist Church, Sidney.