By Tim Hunt:
There is nothing like a worldwide crisis to reveal what is ruling our hearts, where our security is truly found and what our hope is rooted in. When the world goes into melt-down and the normal routines, and expectations of our lives are interrupted or threatened it will always expose our true trusts. We may say that we believe God is sovereign and he is taking care of us but in times like these what is really our hearts deepest loyalty? Sometime in the future (soon I hope) when standing on heavens shore we may see how safe we really were, but how do we navigate through a pandemic that seems to draw our vision downward towards this sin cursed earth we tread on and tempts us to fear by doubting the sovereignty of God and his good purposes.
Psalm 46 tell us a lot about who God is and what he provides. This psalm celebrates the complete adequacy of God in facing threats from nature and the nations. The major thrust of chapter 46 is that God provides stability for his people who reside in two very unstable environments. Luther certainly understood this when he used this Psalm for the basis of writing that great hymn “A Mighty Fortress is Our God”.
When the mountains quake and slip into the sea, though the waters roar and foam and the earth itself change, we will not fear. Why? Because God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in time of trouble. Not only is he near but immediate. It will not take him days to respond to the cry of the contrite. The lord of hosts is with us in such a way that we are eternally united with him in Christ. The God who wrought desolations in the earth, makes wars to cease, breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two and burns the chariots, is with you. When we know who he is, know that He upholds all things by the power of his word, and by whom all things are held together, every leaf, blade of grass, every molecule, every virus, we will cease from striving, cease from fear.
There will be peace that passes all understanding because it is rooted in the God who is near. His grace towards us is like a river whose streams make glad the city of God. This river will not be cut off during a time of siege. This is living water that flows from the throne of God. In times of trial all sufficient grace will be given to enable us to endure to the end. We are shielded by the walls of truth and justice that are upheld by omnipotence and adorned by infinite wisdom. We live in the smile of the King.
While this new chapter with Corona virus has just begun and we do not know yet if it will go on for some time and get much worse or soon be over and end up as a distant memory in the medical history books, either way let us as Christians who have been redeemed, sealed, protected, freed and empowered by His Spirit not miss this God ordained opportunity to display the love of Christ in service to each other and our neighbors and live out the fearlessness of Death that Christ has won for us. Who knows if God might bring regeneration to the lost and renewal to our hearts?