FAITH BLOG

PANDEMIC PARALYSIS

As we dwell in this new normal pandemic, I often feel paralyzed. Do you? I send up my prayers for my friends and people I know who are sick. But what does a new future look like? I think we all need to review our past, present and future in God’s view. 

Review the past, God was imminently faithful in the midst of difficulty. We grew in the experience of taking refuge in the Lord. The paralysis with the past can come when we tell God “never again” will I allow this to happen - be it bad relationships, financial failures, or just capitulating to mean people. We cannot make deals with God and there is no “Plan B.” He longs for us to have a deep relationship with Him - not based on our “just fix it” definition of love. Then I read our Judges reading. The people start the sin cycle – Sin, Slavery, Suffering, Savior and then Salvation. Only to do it all over again. Lord have mercy.They tried to make deals and look for a plan B. Lord, we pray, please heal us, have mercy on Your children.

The present. I am socially distancing from my own family. (He knows.) I just flew three flights and 12 people for the day. My work schedule is cut, my income reduced, the airports are “apocalyptically” empty. (He knows.) My hands are raw from constant washing and arrggh I just touched my face! (He knows this too!) 

The Future: He promises glory. In Luke 22, the Last Supper Celebrates the beginning of the new relationship between God and people. Jesus broke the wretched sin cycle. How? In about twelve hours He would walk to a brutal cross, but first, He still dealt with His disciples’ present day issues. Bear with me. “Hey, I know about the man here who will betray Me.” “Hey, I know you all cannot believe that.” “And I know you are really thinking about your personal glory in My Kingdom.” “And hey Peter, soon you will deny you even know Me.” “Three times!” “But when you repent and return to Me, restore your brothers.” Amazing, He plans for a  glorious future but can deal with our present.

Our decision is clear. Trust in this new deeper relationship with The Trinity. As Larry Crabb says it, become more God obsessed and less self-obsessed. Seek Him, not just to escape this pandemic paralysis, but to know His peace in the midst of trial. Or return to the sin cycle, with its “just get me out of this God.” So - what will your future look like?

Those who follow the right path - Fear the LORD.  Those who take the wrong path - Despise Him.  Proverbs 14:2

But the godly will flourish like palm trees  and grow strong like the cedars of Lebanon for they are transported into the Lord's own house.  They flourish in the courts of our God.  Psalm 92:13

 

Posted by Steve Sague with

GET A HEART OF WISDOM

Psalm 90 is the only Psalm attributed to Moses. Thus, chronologically this also appears to make it the oldest of all the Psalms. It starts off by reminding us that He is “our dwelling place in all generations;” not only that we should rest in Him, but that we are small and our lives are but a breath in sight of eternity. To support this, Moses says:

  • "Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God."  v.2.
  • "For a thousand years in your sight are but as yesterday when it is past, or as a watch in the night."  v. 4.
  • "The years of our life are seventy, or even by reason of strength eighty; yet their span is but toil and trouble; they are soon gone, and we fly away."  v.10.

The Lord then exhorts us to “number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.” Yes, wisdom begins with, or is built upon, a foundation of fear and awe of Him (Proverbs 9:10; Psalm 111:10). But here in verse twelve we are told that we may get a heart of wisdom by numbering our days. How is this?

When we have a short-term view of things, we tend to get selfish and self-centered. Life becomes about us and what we can get out of it. Why am I suffering? Why is life so hard? It becomes about me. However, when we take an eternal perspective of things, we realize our sufferings and trials are for a moment. Romans 8:18 states, “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.” Likewise, in 2 Corinthians 4:16-18:  "So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal."

Thus, recognizing our insignificance in light of eternity, creates a heart of wisdom and joy from having this proper eternal perspective. Consequently, James can exhort us to “count it all joy” as we go through the trials of life (James 1:2). In light of the troubles of today, don’t dwell there. Dwell and rest on Him and that we will spend eternity with Him…that is where we find joy and peace which is the heart of wisdom.

Posted by Michael Burner with

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