April 7, 2020
Hallelujah! They are finally talking about the possibility that this curve may be flattening, thank the Lord!! It is such a blessing to finally see some light at the end of the tunnel. But let's realize that there is a huge difference between flattening and going back to normal. This unseen enemy is still brutally attacking people and must not be taken lightly. This is no time to let our guard down. We dare not let this good news motivate us to start going out in public more than we have been (hopefully for absolute essentials or depending on others only).
History has shown us that these things can circle around again for another round. I don’t say that to frighten anyone, but to keep us vigilant in the fight. Ontario county numbers are low. Let's keep them that way!! As they are telling us, people with absolutely no symptoms are spreading this to others, so we must stay careful - if not for ourselves, then for those who are most at risk.
As I prayed this morning I was reminded that just as we can let our guard down physically, we can also do so spiritually. In the same way the latest news might generate a false sense of security and embolden us to venture out – with the further justification that we “deserve” a break from being cooped up – we can also develop a false sense of security spiritually that can help us to relax a little on some things. For example, maybe staying home has given some more time to watch TV. This can lead to more channel flipping, and, being bored with the same old stuff, we might be tempted to push the normal line a little bit and watch things we normally wouldn’t have. By the same token, maybe we’re spending more time on the phone connecting with others (a very good thing). But how easy can all that conversation turn to gossip if we’re not careful.
Unfortunately, Covid-19 is not the only enemy we will face during this time. The Bible says “Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8). Though both of these enemies can be brutal, the second one ALWAYS is. He will take advantage of every and any situation to try to get us to compromise just a little . . . and then just a little more . . . and so on. Can I be honest and say that I have been caught in this trap more than once? And the ironic thing is, it’s often easier to get caught when we think we’re spiritually strong. We might think we are safe to get right up to the edge of the pond – I'm just looking at the water – and before we know it, we're dipping in our toes, wading to our ankles, and suddenly finding ourselves drowning in water we had no intention of touching.
Our world for the time being has changed. We may have more idle time on our hands or we may be so busy adjusting to changes that we are getting stressed out. Whatever the case, we also have our “flesh” that is telling us, “I need a break, I need a diversion, I need to get out, I need __________ (fill in the blank). Our spiritual enemy knows just how to use these things against us and begin so subtly to lure us to move our boundary lines.
So, as Peter reminds us, it’s time to be sober-minded and watchful. We cannot afford to let our guard down. On the contrary, we can take this time to build ourselves up in our faith. To draw near to the Lord who is our true rest, peace, and joy. To let Him be the diversion we need (see yesterday’s post). To feed and strengthen our hearts in His word. To keep fighting in prayer for the hurting and the healthcare workers on the front lines. To cry out on behalf of loved ones who do not yet know the Lord. To come out of this thing stronger and better than we went in, AMEN?
And I’m right here in the trenches with you!!