• Anon

Covid-19 and Christianity

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of light, it was the season of darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we have nothing before us…..” A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens.

Every line mirrors our reality today. The new normal. Who thought in March 2020 that we would wish that we could cancel 2020 and begin the year fresh?

When the first lockdown was implemented it was heart-warming to see that all the political parties sang from the same Hymn book. Unfortunately, the “Chicken Littles” start running around proclaiming doom and gloom, and there are many false prophets again proclaiming this virus as God’s judgment against whatever ill they believe plagues society or that it was created by Satan.

Some are criticizing governments for reacting too slow while others are saying that government is overstepping our private lives in trying to control it or that they are finally moving in to “kill” our religion.

The new normal is wearing masks when we are around other people; maintaining social distance; sanitize our hands and surfaces; working from home; retrenchments; poverty, etc. One of the challenges that many are facing now is being isolated from other people. If you are on the extreme end of the introvert scale, like I am, this may not be a big deal. But for most people extended isolation can be challenging.

However, the lockdown has also brought positive actions with it. More time to spend with the family; home cooking became a norm; more me time; rediscovering of nature by watching nature return to our gardens and to work in it.

It is important during this time that we realize that God is still sovereign. He is in control. Nothing that is happening is a surprise to him. Nor is it something that he has not allowed to occur for some reason. A reason that may only be known to himself.

We have the option to choose hope over confusion, humility over arrogance, empathy over self-interest, faith over fear. So that in recognizing our frail humanity, we will welcome the pervading presence and life of the Spirit to assert God’s will over our own distractions, providing us with a different way in which we view and make sense of what for too many is an existential reality.

Pandemics such as Covid19 are not new and in the past catastrophes showed that Christians, who were then the minority, exerted extraordinary impact on their societies. Facing headwinds of human devastation, they wasted no time, nor spared personal effort, to care for those struck down by it. With their extraordinary acts of kindness, Christians were viewed as a caring community and their faith taken more seriously. Christians observe and listen, analyzing facts and respond to it.

Christians are called on to see life empowered by hope. List what you can do today and tomorrow, for yourself and others, all the while relying on the Lord’s presence and help. HOPE should be the defining word of our disposition, attitudes, and resolve, always invoking the Spirit of the living God to enable us to think differently than those who have no such hope.

This brings us to another pandemic. Christianity without the cross is a global spiritual pandemic that has killed many Christians and has perverted the ways of the Lord. Jesus said, "If anyone wishes to come after me, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily and follow me" (Luke 9:23). This is the foundation that Christianity was built on and any other contrary concept is hearsay. The conditions necessary for following Jesus are self-denial and cross-carrying. The greatest challenge in Christianity is faulty foundation; those who come to Christ are not told that there are responsibilities and conditions necessary for following Him. If the foundation is destroyed, what can the righteous do?

I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep the love of Christ is, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! (Eph. 3:16 - 21)

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