I don’t know how to change a tire.
I don’t know rocket science or calculus.
I don’t know how bad the coronavirus will get as it sweeps over the United States or if it will cause the next recession.
I don’t know when the world will end either!
I don’t claim to be an expert on anything.
I’m 22, a “millennial” who wants to graduate this spring with two degrees and live with my husband who is an active-duty airman. I don’t know if the coronavirus will deter that, but I do know that fear, worry and panic won’t help anything.
So please, for the love of bathrooms, people, stop panic-buying toilet paper!
In all seriousness, there’s not one day, one conversation that goes by now without discourse regarding COVID-19. In fact, my email blew up the last few days from local businesses to big corporations to church on how they are responding to this global pandemic. I can’t get on my cellphone without seeing how this virus has saturated everything from my news alerts to my Facebook feed.
And then there’s the disparity between people who are in total panic and those who are taking “The necessary precautions and educating themselves”
to the conspiracy theorists who say it’s globalists who are trying to destroy America
or “those Democrats” who are trying to prevent Trump from winning a reelection
or this whole thing was lab-manufactured and a country will take advantage and try to take over the world
or those who don’t even care and want to continue on, business as usual.
And don’t even get me started on the stock market. I’m this close to turning off my Robinhood alerts because every day is a roller-coaster with the DOW. Thank you, World Health Organization, for labeling it as a “pandemic.”
Everyone, everything is scrambling.
It’s all anyone can talk about.
And it makes me wonder, what if Jesus took the world by storm like this? What if Jesus was all that Christians could talk about?
If, right now, all anyone could talk about was a way to eternally save lives? No matter if this virus takes 2-3% of the world’s population down with it?
Honestly, I really don’t know about COVID-19, but it has been interesting to be an observer.
Schools shut down.
March Madness cancelled.
Europe travel ban.
Extracurricular activities, cancelled.
What about the Olympics?
What about all these people who might not have a job for a few weeks to a few months?
The bus drivers?
The airlines and their personnel?
All those people who work for Disney or other amusement parks or sports centers?
What about the graduating class of 2020?
Where will kids go if they are not in school and both parents are working? What about government-paid school lunches?
I suppose it isn’t so unreasonable for people to go into panic mode. And at the other end of the spectrum, I am close to singing “Que Sera Sera,” like Doris Day and to accept the coming crisis. However, with all of the emails and notifications and alerts I have received as the world spins into potential chaos, I appreciated the one from my church the most:
“A scared world needs a fearless church” – AW Tozer
America Is Watching . . .
This Sunday all of America will be watching churches to see how we, the people of faith, handle one of the greatest health scares in our lifetime. I believe our response to this is the same as our response was to 911, SARS, North Korea, and ISIS . . .
“For he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.” (1 John 4:4)
How Should We Respond?
1. Choose trust over panic. God said, “Don’t fear, run to him!” (Psalm 56:3).
2. Do not live in fear. Be cautious but not crazy (2 Timothy 1:7).
3. Let our words and choices reflect our trust in Jesus (Psalm 112:7).
4. Use good judgment (James 3:17-18).
And that, my friends, is the best advice I have received regarding this COVID-19 health crisis.
Let’s not become overwhelmed with worry and panic, but trust the God who has made the universe. God is not surprised and is not wringing his hands in heaven talking with Gabriel and Michael saying, “Oh, what should we do? The devil really pulled a fast one on us!”
Let’s NOT fight people over the last toilet paper roll in Wal-Mart. Instead, let’s take this opportunity to love people, be generous, hospitable and patient while showing others kindness when and where we can.
At the same time, let’s not adopt a fatalist attitude by downright avoiding basic precautions we can be taking like washing our hands and avoiding crowded areas.
Let’s be sensible people, wise as serpents and harmless as doves (Matthew 10:16).
Maybe in this crisis the church will have an opportunity to be a light and the voice of peace (2 Thessalonians 3:16).
There have been other times in history where people thought the world was coming to an end: the bubonic plague, Spanish flu, World War II, Cuban missile crisis/Cold War, etc.
In the end, yes, I believe there will be an end to this world. But the end will really be an amazing beginning as God said he will make all things new and everything will be perfect beyond what we can imagine (Revelation 21:5).
So, maybe the end of the world isn’t a bad thing. Christians should rejoice for the end times because that’s when Jesus is going to be coming back!
Paul even said it was our hope:
“Don’t grieve as others who have no hope. For since we believe Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep. For this we declare to you by a word from the Lord, that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first. Then we who are alive, who are left, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we will always be with the Lord. Therefore encourage one another with these words.” (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18)
Therefore, let’s be encouraged, let’s remember who our hope is in and let’s be on fire for Jesus.
And no matter what will happen with the coronavirus, let’s have faith that God is in control.
Because he really is.