Rumors of war, pestilence, famine, flood, swarms of locust, riots, needless death and destruction. What a world we now live in and it seemed to change overnight. So how do we handle the change? Some say it is God getting revenge on the United States because of the evil that is here. Some say that the end time is already here and we need to get ready for the rapture and the resurrection of the living and the dead. Others, deny both of these and demand peace, freedom and self-ideals. “I am free to do as I want and no one has the right to tell me or give me any boundaries.” These are the essence of the words of people of late, or at least their actions.
For Christians the world in many ways has not changed or should not have changed. We live in a fallen world that rejects God at each and every opportunity. The world denies the power of God for life, salvation and direction. Christians are called to live each day for God and Christ, not serving their own needs or the needs of others but fully obedient and serving God because of the grace given to us to be redeemed by the very sacrificed blood of Christ. So let’s take a moment and step back. What has changed in our commitment to God and to Christ?
• Are we able to worship God as we had prior? Yes!
• Are we still to be obedient and love our neighbor as ourselves? Yes!
• Are we called to make disciples and train other up into the way of Christ? Yes!
• Are we to be steadfast and secure in the one that died for us and saved us from our sin and shame? Yes!
• Are we called to live our lives for Christ in the midst of a pagan and uncaring world? Yes!
• Will we be persecuted for the name sake of Christ? Yes!
So then, what has changed that has caused people to divide over whether or not to dawn a face mask or the world to express the dislike of a person’s behavior? Our emotional overload of the conflicts that are going on around us. Psychologically, many of churched and unchurched, believers and non-believers have hit the breaking point because of the stress of this world. Do I have a job, do I not have a job? Can I hug you, I’m not allowed to hug you? Can I go there, can I go to another location. The separation, the anxiety level, the fear, the uncertainty of the times has caused all of us to have reactions that we would not normally have had in years past. So, what advice, what hope, or what peace can I give you today?
Follow these simple steps.
1. Take a step back and unplug from the information overload and addiction created to the ever present, latest and greatest updates via facebook, media and etc. Detoxify from the garbage that so easily upsets and disrupts the soul.
2. Take a quiet walk in the nature of God. Hear the birds sing, the tree leaves rustle and the stream gently flowing.
3. Call a close friend and talk, go visit and if the two of you want to hug. Don’t be afraid to give each other permission to find inner comfort and peace.
4. Call upon God to enter your time and relax in Him. Remember the words of the 23rd Psalm.
5. Allow the Lord, to be your shepherd and be a faithful flock in the secure fold of God.
The writer is the pastor of Immanuel Church of Kettlersville and St. Peter’s Church in New Bremen.