I got up angry.
I reluctantly joined the zoom church service - angry.
I tried. I tried real hard to join in the piped in praise music. I even stood up as if I was in a church service and sang my heart out. Still angry.
I listened to very good message on Palm Sunday, but when the preacher started reading how Jesus went into the temple and cleared away the money changers, the merchants, the money makers from them temple in obvious anger, I could finally relate. Yeah, God, I'm angry too.
This virus has worked its evil in the best way possible. It has stopped the assembly of believers gathering together. We are not able to exhort one another, stir up love, give hugs, give encouragement as Hebrews 10:25 commands we do. The best we can do is look at yet another screen and that does not begin to cut it. Sorry, this virtual church service and keeping everyone at a distance does not even qualify for a poor substitute.
I had to go the grocery store the other day and it's like people are afraid to even look your way for fear they will catch something from you. I went into our local bakery and the clerk behind the counter literally screamed, "get out, only three people allowed in the the store at a time." I shrunk out of the store and when a man departed he said, I guess you can go in now. I waited at a safe distance not wanting to be yelled at again. The other two customers paid and left. So, I asked the clerk, "are you okay?"
"No, she said, literally trembing. "I have to work, but I am scared. Really scared."
I wanted to wrap my arms around her but of course I could not. Instead, I told her I would pray for her safety. By the time I left she was considerably calmer, but wow, what kind of panic and fear has the media created? The 24-hour news broadcasts with nothing but the Covid 19 fear-mongering dialogue. The loss of life is tragic, and my heart weeps for those who grieve, but there is another type of pandemic being created. People are locked in the prison of their homes. People can't work and pay their bills. People are crippled with fear. The depression, isolation and fear cause, will be the fall-out with far-reaching damage for months to come. This makes me angry. Why? Because Satan is the author of sickness, death, fear, and panic, and at the moment one would think he is winning.
And so I say ... Let's clear the temple. Let's lead the charge as Jesus did on Palm Sunday and make room in the temple to once again pray, praise and join together. Lets turn over the tables of evil in righteous anger. Out goes the fear. Out goes the constant TV, Net flicks, mind-numbing movies, video games, on-line distractions that lead no where. Christians arise!
How you ask?
In come prayer, and lots of it. In comes fasting. In comes praise and worship. In comes walks in the outdoors praying all the way. In comes the offer to help a neighbour with his groceries, or rake his lawn. In comes a painting that depicts the beauty of God's creation. In comes the writing of music that edifies God. In comes the written word, a letter, a short story, or a book. In comes the phone calls or texts to encourage. In comes the things that will push the darkness back and bring us back together as the body of Christ in power and might.
But the most important thing ... In comes faith. We need God, not man, to heal our land. We need this Covid 19 eridicated.
We need to call out to Yahweh Nissi The LORD-Is-My-Banner meaning victory. He is still in control. We need to claim His power. He has the victory over fear, sin, all evil including this Covid virus. 2 Chronicles 7:14 tells us what we need to do. "If My people (note it does not say non-Christians it say MY PEOPLE) who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land."
This is going to take some real soul-searching. The question is ... are we up to the challenge, or do we want to stay locked away in our houses doing zoom services? I, for one, do NOT.
Listen to this boot stomping, soul rising, old hymn by Guy Penroy called Victory in Jesus. Really listen to the words.