The timing of God is often difficult to understand or accurately anticipate. He moves as His
sovereign will decides and to us, His children, it can be perplexing, frustrating and on other
occasions exciting. However, we can be certain He is always good and only ever acts out of
His character of goodness and love – there is nothing fickle about the heart of God, although
we may interpret waiting for answers to prayer think it might possibly be so!
In 2 Chronicles 7:13 it says “When I…” – God has His chosen moments. They are always
determined and carried out by Him and never at the instigation of other influences or unseen
forces. We read in Job about God’s challenges to him about timing and purpose, and Job
has to admit that he really understands neither but it’s all about God as “When” and “Ifs”.
The World continues to feel and experience the ravages of Covid. We are constantly
bombarded with information, some true, some sensational, some tragic about the virus. We
get glimpses of breakthroughs which are encouraging and give hope. But the big question
remains ‘when will it end’?
The answer I believe lies in those two words “When I…”, Father already knows the outcome
of this disease and He will be watching our response to the situation. Like Job experienced
there is no easy or obvious answer to why God allows suffering and death, it’s a question
that has been in man’s “Mystery Box” since almost the beginning of time itself, and it gets us
nowhere revisiting that form of questioning.
The enemy, the world and our perversity will at times try and distract us from the truth that
our Heavenly Father is totally trustworthy. The number of our days has been determined by
God and we have that certain hope our eternal future is in His safe hands so we don’t have
to be caught up in despair or fear.
The casual observer of a Christian’s response to Covid may interpret it as blasé or fatalistic
or even delusional but we have a sure hope and peace, by the Holy Spirit – “All shall be well,
and all shall be well and all manner of thing shall be well.” ― Julian of Norwich (circa 1340s).
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally , brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think on these things”. Philippians 4:6-8
It will probably take all the godly effort we can muster, aided by Holy Spirit, not just to hang on to these words from Paul, but to live them out on a day to day basis.
“So speak encouraging words to one another. Build up hope so you’ll all be together in this, no one left out, no one left behind. I know you’re already doing this; just keep on doing it.” 1 Thess 5:11 (The Message)
I think it’s much easier to face difficulty and challenge if we know we’re not alone in it. So
let’s continue to pray, encourage (spoken words and emails work well) and give practical support when we can. Our love for one another will be testimony that Jesus is amongst us and that He is our strength and purpose.
“Finally, be strong in the Lord [draw your strength from Him and be empowered through your
union with Him] and in the power of His [boundless] might. Put on the full armour of God [for
His precepts are like the splendid armour of a heavily-armed soldier], so that you may be able
to [successfully] stand up against all the schemes and the strategies and the deceits of the
devil.” Eph 6:10-11