This week has felt heavy, but if I’m being real, for so many the heavy has been around for a long time.
“If you look at the world, you’ll be distressed. If you look within, you’ll be depressed. If you look at God, you’ll be at rest.” Corrie Ten Boom
“You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You. Trust in the LORD forever, for in YAH, the LORD, is the everlasting strength. For He brings down those who dwell on high, the lofty city; He lays it low, he lays it low to the ground, He brings it down to the dust. The foot shall tread it down – the feet of the poor and the steps of the needy.” Isaiah 26:3-6
“LORD, You will establish peace for us, for You have also done all our works in us.” Isaiah 26:12
Peace has absolutely nothing to do with what is going on around us, and everything to do with the ONE who lives in us and reigns over us. It feels like the world is on fire. The stories we are hearing are absolutely devastating. Even here, on U.S. soil, chaos seems to reign. COVID-19 is rising, and everyone is fighting. But none of that can steal our peace if we keep our eyes on God.
AND . . . Make no mistake . . . God is at work . . .
Followers of Christ are under intense persecution in many parts of the world. At the same time, amidst that horrendous persecution, the church is growing exponentially. Here, in the west, we must not become so used to our lives of comfort, so far removed from what is happening half a world away or even in our own backyards, so busy arguing over masks and vaccines and politics and every other distraction that the devil throws our way, that we fail to recognize the hugeness of what is happening.
In every crisis, be it personal or corporate, we have two choices. We can blame God, get angry, and turn away, or we can remember that we live in a fallen and broken world where Satan wants nothing more than to destroy every single piece and part of God’s creation. Our battle is absolutely not against flesh and blood (Ephesians 6:12), but we have a Savior who defeated the devil . . . who shed His blood and paid the highest price to redeem us. Come life or come death, if you know Jesus, you have the victory. The world may be burning, but it is setting the stage for the Holy Spirit to move like never before. The persecution may continue to increase and grow, I actually believe it will, but the church, throughout history, has only grown under persecution. And I believe the fire the devil set to destroy is instead going to fan the flames in the hearts of Christians around the globe.
Let’s not sit on the sidelines. Let’s not let our desire for ease and comfort make us miss out on what is both difficult and beautiful. Let us not miss out on the hard and the holy of it all.
The question remains, “What can we do?” We still have bills to pay and jobs to show up for and children to raise. Is there really anything we can do about the horrors playing out around the world? Is there really any way I can affect change and reach others for Jesus?
Pray – We must begin and end and carry through it all with prayer. Constant and continual prayer. When all we can do is pray, I believe we’re finally at the point where we’re doing the most.
Give – Whether we like it or not, money is how things get done in the world’s economy, and ministries around the world need financial resources. Samaritan’s Purse works here and around the world meeting the physical, medical, and spiritual needs of those they serve. They are currently on the ground in Haiti working to help those affected by the most recent earthquake. Global Catalytic Ministries serves in one of the most dangerous areas for Christians in the world, the Middle East where Christianity is growing by leaps and bounds, and they are actively looking for ways to move help and resources to those in Afghanistan. Those are just two ministries among hundreds. As always, give to international ministries but also give to local ministries . . . your church, women’s shelters, foster care organizations, adoption agencies . . . the need is huge everywhere.
Be the hands and feet of Jesus – Maybe you can’t go to Africa (or maybe you can), but can you teach Sunday School? Can you make a casserole for someone that is sick? Can you be a friend to someone in need? Wherever you find yourself, be Jesus to the people around you.
Be informed – We cannot live in denial to the things going on in this world. We cannot look at the tragedies around the world and think as long as they don’t cross our borders, we’re good. God, His love, His mercy, His saving grace, are not bound by borders nor should we be. We have been given so much, and we must take the great commission to heart, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all he nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20
“Let my heart be broken by the things that break the heart of God,” the late Bob Pierce. May this forever be our prayer and our heart’s cry.
Copyright 2021, Courtney G Davis, All Rights Reserved The writings and images contained within this site are the intellectual property of this writer unless otherwise noted, and may not be copied or used without express permission of the author.