Here we sit in 2020 in a very fragile world. Just when we think we are in control, we are reminded that we are not in control. Most of the world is under quarantine due to COVID-19. Unprecedented times can create pivotal moments to impact our lives.
Wait. Where is God in all of this? Shouldn’t God fix all of this? I mean, if there is a God, why would he create a world with sickness, tragedies, and death? Why do I want to believe in God that lets bad things happen?
If you are doubting God right now, maybe as a non-believer that there is a God, please keep reading. I hope to reach you in this message.
God created the earth, and everything on it, including us. Start in Genesis and read about the creation of the world. God created us as “sovereign” beings who choose whether to believe in Him, or not. The word “sovereign” is important. The definition of sovereign is “acting or done independently and without outside interference.” God created us to have the ability to make our own choices. This is very important to recognize as it relates to how our world exists today.
Did God create the sin and sadness in the world or did we?
Man has rebelled against God time and time again. Man was given a choice by God. We can be devout to Him or choose to sin against Him. The Bible tells us of murder, famine, plagues, war, and lots of death. The world has always been filled with sin, plagues, sadness. God created man and man introduced sin into the world.
Jesus tells us that “he is the door of the sheep,” in John 10:7. He states throughout the book of John that the only way to get to God, in heaven, is to believe in Jesus as our Christ and Savior.
The book of John in the New Testament is packed with great evidence of Jesus proclaiming who he is and why we should follow him. The book outlines seven “I am” statements from Jesus where he directs to us that the only way “to the Father” is through Him.
I would encourage you to read the book of John to confirm the great works Jesus did while he was on earth. John outlines Christ’s many miracles like healing the sick and lame, feeding five thousand people with little to no food, and walking on water. Jesus said in John 4:48 “Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will by no means believe.” This was at a stage in His ministry when Jesus was boldly proclaiming Himself as the Son of God. He was defying the religious leaders of that time and knowingly contributing toward his ultimate crucifixion on the cross.
What courage and conviction it takes to stand up in the face of doubt and remain steadfast. What courage it takes to speak to what some may not believe or understand. At at a time when our nation is on lockdown due to the COVID-19 pandemic, I am here as a believer to proclaim that the only thing that can save all of us from sadness, tragedy, despair, worry, and death is Jesus. Times like we are living in today test our resolve. Should we question God in times of trouble or do we run to him?
My prayer is that perhaps someone who does not know Jesus is reading this. Perhaps you are questioning the purpose for your life and trying to understand how to interpret what is going on in our world. Where is God in all this death and tragedy? If God is so good, why doesn’t he fix or prevent these problems?
Through sin, tragedy and death, God wants us to turn to Him and seek Him. We should be thankful for our opportunity to spend eternity with Him in heaven, knowing that the sadness and hurt that we know on earth will not exist in Heaven. Heaven is a perfect place with no sickness or death. That is what Jesus did for us. Jesus came into a sinful world and He proclaimed His majesty as God’s son, and died on a cross for us, to save our sins.
As most of us want to know what it takes to be saved and live eternally with Christ, read the book of John. Jesus makes seven “I am” statements in the book of John that I would encourage you to read.
- John 6:35, 41, 48, 51 – “I am the bread of life”
- John 8:12 – “I am the light of the world”
- John 10:7, 9 – “I am the door of the sheep”
- John 10:11, 14 – “I am the resurrection and the life”
- John 11:25 – “I am the good shepherd”
- John 14:6 – “I am the way, the truth, and the life”
- John 15:1, 5 – “I am the true vine”
I pray daily for those inflicted with COVID-19 but I cannot help but think how events like this can “get our attention.” God is always in control and we should recognize and glorify Him. The stress and uncertainty created by this event can be overwhelming but the only way to cleanse ourselves of fear and worry is to give it to Christ.
Isaiah 41:10 tells us “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.”
So, in the face of a worldwide pandemic, what is our response? I pray that we turn to Jesus. I pray that during this period of quietness and reflection, we study God’s word and grow closer to Him. There are awesome resources to learn more about God’s word if you are not sure where to go. Start with the Bible.com app to read the Bible and subscribe to the reading plans on the app. The reading plans are a great way to walk through chapters of the Bible and get help understanding scripture. You can find great church teachings at cornerstonechapel.net or eastview.church/. Use your free time and learn about the Bible through sermons which provide great explanations of the Bible. Set aside time each day to seek answers to the questions you have. If you cannot find them, find a local church that uses the Bible to preach the gospel and proclaim God’s word and meaning for our lives.
Although we may not always understand God’s plan for us or the world, especially when tragedy impacts us, I pray that we “focus our eyes” on the One who can save us. Focus on the words throughout the book of John professing Jesus’ love for us and His ability to save us from sin and death.
I encourage you to pray this prayer. “Lord Jesus, I know that we don’t always understand why things happen in our world. I admit that I am a sinner and I need to know Jesus. I know that I am not capable of seeing the purpose and meaning of bad things. I know that I have a lot of work to do because I question You. I need to study scripture, absolve my thoughts from what I know of this world, and put my trust in You. I must devote myself to learn your purpose for my life and how to glorify you in the process. Lord, please show me how I can come closer to you, in the face of tragedy and adversity, and put my faith in You. Lord God, I believe that Jesus died on the cross for my sins. Thank you for that free gift to me. Please fill my heart with your Spirit and help me deal with the burdens of this world. Amen”