Coronavirus · God's character · God's Love · trust

Trusting My Father

This life has lots of hard questions –

Why is Covid still lingering?
Why hasn’t God taken it away?
Is He powerful enough to do so?

Last week I shared one answer to those questions. Today I want to give one more…

We won’t always understand God’s reasons for what He’s doing. Sometimes God is silent.  I think of Job’s trial when God asked him in Job 38 ~

Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding. Hast thou perceived the breadth of the earth? declare if thou knowest it all.19 Where is the way where light dwelleth? and as for darkness, where is the place thereof,

At those times (and there are lots of them in Scripture and in our lives), we simply trust God. How can we trust Him?  We come to know Him.

My dad didn’t owe me an explanation; he was father!  He did what was best for me.  Sometimes he did indeed surprise me by stopping into that custard stand, but there were more times when he drove right on by.

On a much higher plane, when we come to know Who God is in the pages of His Word, we will learn that whether He does what we want, or if He does something we don’t understand, we can trust Him! We wouldn’t complain or shake our finger in God’s face if we could understand that He was protecting us from danger, or preparing us for something even more difficult in the future.  

The Egyptians who chased after the Israelites didn’t have the blessing of the pillar of fire or the cloud to guide them; it was darkness to them.  God will reveal Himself to those that seek Him, but scoffers and accusers stumble in their darkness.

Today when I think of someone when I have ice cream you know who it is? It’s my dad! What a giver of good gifts. But God is even greater! Can God stop the virus? Of course.  Why hasn’t He yet?  I don’t know, but HE does, and I trust His character to do what is best for me.

Friend, you may be wondering why God is allowing some other kind of trial to go on in your life, you may have a question about His ways, but the answers shared above all apply. Open your Bible. See His character and trust Him as your Father who loves you more than you can ever imagine.

Refresh your trust in a loving, providential and righteous God.

Denise

Coronavirus · God's character · God's Love

Why Is God Allowing the Virus to Continue?

You may have heard me say this before, but I was blessed with a wonderful dad.  However, he did disappoint me from time to time.  I don’t know how he could’ve done it, but that’s the truth.  He just disappointed me!

When I was a child, there were times when I was sure he was going to take our family up to the frozen custard stand where we would all get sweet treats.  But I can’t tell you the number of times when we were in the car and I was sure he would pull into the little parking lot of that building, and he would drive right on by! How could he do that to a child?

As a little girl I could’ve come up with two conclusions – 

  1. He didn’t have the power to do it. No money for a 50 cent cone?  Nope.  That wasn’t true. He had a good job and was wise with his finances.
  2. He didn’t love me and didn’t care that I would suffer without that custard.
    Nope.  That wasn’t true.  He proved his love for me in much greater ways by his sacrifice for my real needs.

I never did accuse my dad of either one of those things.  You know why?  I knew him.  I had spent time with him.  I learned what he was like, and he was neither powerless nor unloving.  I simply learned that I could trust him.  I learned that in the time that he knew was best for me and my family, he would take us to get ice cream.  If he didn’t do it now, I knew there was a better reason, and I was okay with that, simply because I knew him.

I recently had someone accuse God of those two accusations in regards to the Coronavirus, saying that:
He either can’t stop it, or
He doesn’t care about people suffering.

The only answer to give a scoffer of God is God’s Word –  the written explanation of Who He is.  He has the Words of life. 

There are so many explanations I could share, but I just read this passage in Exodus 13,

 When Pharaoh let the people go, God did not lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter.

“No, of course He didn’t lead them the shorter path,” an scoffer might say! 

 “He took them out to the wilderness where they would wander and not have food and water!  He doesn’t care!  He loves to see people suffer! Or maybe He isn’t able to help.!”

Any time we come to a question about God, why He’s doing something or doing nothing,  we must look to His character for the answers. We have to learn what He is like. Is He just mean-hearted?  Is He not powerful enough to change things?  

In this situation, we need to keep reading.  The next verse says, For God said, If they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.” 18 So God led the people around by the desert road toward the Red Sea.[

Did you catch it?  There was danger on that closer/easier path! It would have been easy for the Israelites to think that the Via Maris was the best way to go; but the dangers of the way were too great, though they could not see them.  It was the road where Egypt’s military outposts were. God knew the people of Israel were not ready to face this yet (lest perhaps the people change their minds when they see war, and return to Egypt).

God anticipated the dangers they could not see. 

Based on that verse, what do we learn about our God?  

  • He is providential!  He saw to things ahead of time and protected them from those dangers that they weren’t even aware of!
  • He is a God of love.  A God who didn’t love them would’ve let them get entangled in any kind of danger.
  • He is righteous.  He led them correctly.  He cannot do a wrong thing or have the wrong motive as you and I would!  Why?  Because He is righteous.

Refresh your trust in a loving, providential and righteous God. As a child, I could trust my father because I knew him. We can’t trust a God we don’t know. Draw to Him and learn of Him. We might not understand His ways, but we can come to know His heart.

Next week I’m going to expand on that last sentence. I hope you’ll come back for the conclusion!

In the meantime, wash you hands and remember He is in control.

Coronavirus · gratitude · salvation

Why Coronavirus Inconsistencies Make Me Grateful

I think I’ve shaken my head out of confusion and disbelief more in the last few months than in my entire life.

The reason?

Inconsistency.

It’s centered around the Coronavirus, of course (because isn’t everything these days?).

  • You may not sit inside…Of course we serve inside but you may not sit outside!
  • Only half capacity in store…Only 7% in stadium!
  • Church may not meet…Half the building may be full.
  • Masks are required at all times by everyone…Most of the staff have masks pushed down below their nose.
  • No one may stay overnight at the hospital with a patient…We can make allowances for you to stay.

I could go on, but I think you get my drift. It’s not as much what we have to do, but how inconsistent all the rules are that make this a season of frustration and confusion.

This frustration made me sit recently and think about how thankful I am that my salvation is rock solid. It is all based on Christ Who never changes and on His Word that is forever true! I never have to wonder if He has changed His mind or if there have been new guidelines added as to how to get to heaven! It’s as simple as 1, 2, 3.

  1. Realize I’m a sinner on my way to hell.
  2. Understand that Christ took my place on the cross to reconcile me to God.
  3. Accept Christ as my personal Savior.

All that will never change. Why?

Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. Hebrews 13:8

What peace that truth gives! My daily life goes on with a grateful heart. Christ lifted the rules (the law) and saves us by grace!! How blessed we are!

So in reality, I can be thankful for the inconsistencies because it makes me realize once again what a wonderful gift my salvation truly is!

I’m done ranting about the Coronavirus…until I start ranting again. Just kidding. I really am asking the Lord to help me to remember the grace-filled life I get to enjoy for ETERNITY and be thankful instead!

Maybe this reminder will give each of us something to share with others when we start to shake our head again. The world needs to know of our Savior Who is ALWAYS full of grace, and that never changes!

Coronavirus · Fear · worry

How To Spend Quarantined Time During Coronavirus

 

Praying

Whitney and I had a discussion recently about how people are wondering how they will spend their time at home if they are quarantined at home during the Coronavirus.  Some are treating it like an extended “Snow Day.”  They’re eating, watching movies, and scrolling through social media.  While there’s nothing inherently wrong with any of those activities, I’d like to challenge us to use this time to refresh ourselves spiritually, emotionally and physically. If you’re wondering what in the world you’ll do if you’re forced to spend a couple weeks at home, here’s a list of ten suggestions that can leave you stronger at the end of the virus, rather than just entertained for its duration.

  1. Spend longer times in God’s Word. Find passages that will remind you of Who God is.  Psalm 46 is a great place to start/park! Listen to Scripture on your phone.  Pull up podcasts that give Truth!
  2. Turn every care into a prayer.  Pray specifically so you’ll know when God answers!
  3. Keep a journal of the things that God is teaching you each day. You will forget these lessons when life gets back to “normal.”  These truths can be an anchor for the next trial that comes!
  4. Tell others what is comforting you during this time!  Is there a promise you’re clinging to?  Do you have assurance of God’s presence and peace in times of a storm?  Be ready to give the Hope of God’s Word to others who are afraid.
  5. Unplug.  Rather than using your extra time to have more screen activity, why not limit yourself to 30 minutes a day?  This will allow you to hear One Voice.
  6. Read other sources that can encourage you.  Fiction books are fun, but why not use this time to read that which will teach and tether your heart to God?
  7. Pray about how you can be resourceful.  Those apples that are mushy? Cook them into applesauce.  The strawberries you’re worried will mold before you can use them?  Flash freeze them and put them in smoothies or frozen salads,,breads or desserts. Run out of meat?  Look for a pasta dish using the fresh veggies you have on hand. Try not to be tempted to jump on board and order extra food or produce because you’re afraid you’ll run out.  Wisely use what you have and take one day at a time.
  8. If the weather and restrictions permit, go outside.  Take a walk.  Trim back your rose bushes.  Get the raised beds ready for planting.  Clean up the yard and prepare it for spring. Get your porch spring-ready while you’re at it!
  9. Do some work. It’s amazing how just doing something normal can settle anxiety.  Start your spring cleaning.  Sort out a closet.  Straighten up the garage.  Move out your winter wardrobe.  Dust the winter out and sweep in spring!
  10. Spend greater times together as a family. 
    Talk.  Share concerns.  Listen.  Pray. Pray together for people affected by the virus – those sick, the medical personnel, those out of work now, the children in need of care, those in the nursing homes who are restricted from their families, people in roles that have to make hard decisions – our president, other governmental officials, pastors, and the list could go on and on.
    Be together. Cook together. Serve others in your neighborhood. Look for ways your family can be a blessing.

If you’re finding it difficult to deal with the stress and anxiety of this situation of the Coronavirus, I invite you to this page of my blog, Help for Troubling Times.  or to this post. Also, Whitney wrote a wonderful post, What To Do When You Don’t Know What To Do that I know will encourage you!

Make the most of this time and refresh yourself – whether you’re quarantined, or just forced to slow down!

I’m curious, what do you find is making you most anxious about this time of the  Coronavirus?

denise a