Why Has God Allowed COVID-19?

If there is one question people ask during times of crisis or suffering, it is why does a loving God allow suffering?

This is a time that the world is dealing with a pandemic. People are sick and dying from the Coronavirus. So what’s the deal with God in all of this?

I can assure you that God was not surprised by this. It is also entirely possible that He caused this to happen. Many Christians would disagree with me but if you read the Bible you will see many times when God brought disease upon His people to either punish his people for their disobedience or to defend his people from their enemies.

Is it really true that a loving God would bring sickness and disease on people? It’s sometimes hard to imagine our loving and merciful God displaying such wrath and anger toward people. But God’s punishments always have the goal of repentance and restoration.

God said to Solomon: “When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people, if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” Could this be what is happening right now? Personally, I don’t understand how this would help God’s public relations with people who don’t believe in Him already. God has His reasons and is not compelled to share them with us.

So am I saying that God intentionally brought this virus upon the world right now? Well, I obviously can’t speak for God – no one can – but I want to dispel the idea that God wouldn’t allow this.

The truth is that we live in a fallen world that is imperfect. Since the fall, God has allowed mankind to have the freedom to make their own decisions and choices. Sometimes we make wrong decisions and have to suffer the consequences as a result of our choices. This affects nature as well.

Is the Coronavirus a sign of the end times? Maybe. This isn’t the Tribulation period as prophesied in the Book of Revelation but it could be an indicator that we are getting closer to the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. The Bible predicts that we are like. a woman experiencing birth pains. The pains get closer together as she gets closer to birthing a child. Matthew 24:7-8 describes our current status:

“Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and pestilence and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains.”

I’m not being a downer about God but I think we should be realistic about God. It’s totally okay to pray and trust God in these times but we should also take precautions to protect ourselves. This is when our faith is put to the test.

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Do I Really Matter?

lonely-man-on-benchI’m sure you have experienced this situation before – you are in a group of people that you haven’t met before and someone asks this question:

So what do you do?

Then it begins. Based upon your answer to that question you are classified and categorized.

I don’t think that’s really fair do you?

My job or what I do isn’t who I am.

Most of us have had times where we ask ourselves if we matter. I certainly have. We wonder whether or not we are making a difference in our lives.

Although I am very thankful to have a job, I get tired of the routine. Sunday evenings I have to fight off the impending Monday blues.

While others may classify or judge us on the work we do or what degree we hold, that is not who we are. God certainly doesn’t look at us that way. I have witnessed people in the church address others as Doctor or Most Holy Reverend and it sickens me. Sorry, but I have to be honest here. God doesn’t care about the titles so why should we? A person who works flipping burgers is just as important to God as the person who has attended college multiple years. God looks at us each individually and we absolutely matter to Him.

The Bible tells us that we are inscribed on the palm of his hand. (Isaiah 49:16) Now that’s pretty special isn’t it?

So what does that tell us? It means that God is interested in us and cares about our lives.

We matter to Him. Each one of us has the opportunity to impact others every day. Whether it is a co-worker, a child or a stranger we can invest in someone’s life. That’s what our purpose is. God never said that getting a doctorate degree in theology was what mattered to Him the most. People matter to Him. How we treat others is the most important thing.

Quite often I work with people who are unfiltered in their comments. Their words can affect the course of my day if I let it. It’s very difficult not to respond the same way and, honestly, it takes enormous resolve to respond the right way and have the soft answer to turn away their wrath.

Okay, so you aren’t the CEO of a Fortune 500 company but you still matter.  Whether you are a stay-at-home parent or work for a large corporation,  you matter.  You have the opportunity each day to invest in people.  Sometimes you can make or break someone’s day.  This is where you can be the difference matter.  I have had times in my life where I have honestly moaned and complained to God about the people I have to work with or some of the personalities that do not agree with mine but in those situations I have had to realize that I can still make a difference.  Even if we are put in a difficult situation, we can still matter to someone.

We are encouraged to do our jobs and whatever we do as if we are doing it for the Lord.  Yeah, I know.  That’s really hard to do sometimes when your supervisor is less than ideal or shows their lack of integrity.  We can’t look at them.  We can’t control them.  We can control us and what we do.

Sometimes we don’t seem to matter to people around us but we always matter to God.  He cares about everything that happens to us.  I have always heard that He has a plan for us – and he does.  Sometimes we get off the track He has planned for us but if we are sincere and seek His will, He will re-direct us back to where we need to be.  I know some folks believe that God has predestinated every choice and everything in our lives.  Some believe that He already knows the end.  They forget the power of our own free will.  Yes, God knows where we are going to end up if we stay on the course we are going but things in life change and we are totally able to use our free will to change that course.  I know that’s deep but it goes to show that we do matter and what we do with our lives when it comes to the way we treat others matters too.

If you woke up this morning wondering if you matter let me assure you that you do.  Now when you go out, make your life matter to someone else.  Make a difference to the people around you.

There Is A God And I Ain’t Him

It’s hard to wait on God to do something.  You pray the prayers and engage your faith yet you wait.  I don’t know about you but I’m not any good at waiting.  

I have even found myself telling God how He could get something done.  Yeah, I’m sure He had a good laugh at that one.  I had a pastor once that liked to say that there is a God and we ain’t Him.  It’s funny how we can forget that little fact.  

I’m good at figuring things out for God but the truth is that I have no clue and I’m certainly not God.  For me, it’s hard not being in control.  The waiting and seeing nothing change is quite frustrating.  It’s like you see where you want to be and simply want to get from Point A to Point B.  

God doesn’t work like that.  

If there is one thing I think I have learned in time I have had to wait on God is that He has his own timing and ways in answering prayers.  It is evident that to answer prayer which involves people that God won’t force people to do things.  There is still that wildcard of free will.  This is where some times where God has to work in His mysterious ways. The dynamics of everything working together can get quite complicated.  

So I’m still waiting.  What can I possibly do while I’m waiting?

  1. Accept it.  There’s nothing I can do to change it.  Even if I did I could make it worse.  The best I can do is be where I am now. 
  2. Keep the faith.  Faith can waver. Some days it’s really strong and other days it needs a little boost.  What helps me is to look back when God has helped in the past.  
  3. Be thankful.  Instead of constantly asking and repeating my petition it is good to be thankful on how I got to this point.  Being thankful actually strengthens your faith. 
  4. Be ready.  Look for the answer and be ready when God opens the door.  

It’s hard not being in control but it’s better to let God do His job.  Nothing surprises God and it’s certain you would never hear him say “Oops”.  He knows what He is doing.  

Another good thing about God is even if we get in the way and mess things up, God can still take our mess and work it out. Of course, it could delay things but He’s still able to work it out.  

Do I like waiting?  Heck no.  I see the answer but there is no way to it yet.  I have to keep calm and not stress out about it.  It’s a delicate balance.  I have also reminded myself of times past when I thought I knew the plan but it turned out differently but later saw how it worked out like it should.  

Yeah, I think I’m going to let God do His thing and try to stay out His way.