I can’t shake the thought. Ever since our men’s prayer meeting this morning, all that is going through my head is this question: what will Christians be remembered by after this crisis? What will the church (universal) be known for having done during this pandemic?
Will we be remembered for complaining about the government or feeding the hungry?
Will we be remembered for being a sign of hope or an example of anxiety?
Will we be thought of as those who bought into all sorts of conspiracy theories or those who redirected people’s attention to Christ and His Good News that goes beyond this world?
See, people are watching us… they’re learning about Christ through us. What are we teaching them? What are they learning by looking at our lives? Our posts? Our blogs!?
I remember while growing up, I hated missed opportunities, but I experienced many. I’ve mentioned my childhood fears in the past, but they were prominent in my life. My fears caused me to seek security and comfort. I had to try to control the situation, be sure of what I was getting myself into, all the time.
Because of this wrong pursuit, I missed many chances to grow and experience new things. From silly things like new foods and restaurants, to bigger things like traveling abroad or attending schools outside of Los Angeles, I always chose the safe, the known, the controlled.
I think there is a similar danger here with the way many of us Christians are responding to this pandemic. We are so busy trying to control this situation or return to the comforts of the known, we are missing out on all the Lord has prepared for us.
The Lord Himself is also watching us—I imagine Jesus gently asking:
- What did you do with your family that I gave you so much time with during this crisis?
- Have you made my Word a priority in your life now that you have the chance?
- What about showing love and care for the Body of Christ? Have you used the time saved by not having so many appointments to call brothers and sisters and really get to know their hearts?
- Have you been a good neighbor? Do you know your neighbors?
- How have you made My Name known around you at a time when the world needs to know Me?
Imagine Paul in prison in Philippi (Acts 16). He was wrongfully imprisoned against Roman law. He was disrespectfully treated, though a Roman citizen by birth. Yet in prison he didn’t spend his time complaining to the guards about how inappropriate their actions were (he’d take that up later!). While in the moment, he and Silas prayed and sang hymns. When the earthquake hit and the doors were opened, instead of fleeing for their own freedom, they stayed and evangelized the jailer. They weren’t pursuing their own safety or comfort but God’s glory and the Kingdom’s advancement.
I remember how often my fears caused me to miss opportunities. I wanted security in the moment, so I fled the “dangers”. But afterward, in the quiet of my “safety” I often thought, I’ve done it again, missed another chance to do something great.
I don’t want to feel that way after this pandemic ends. I don’t want to think back to this moment in time and think, missed opportunity. I want to seize the moment, walk in the steps He’s prepared for me, and glorify His name. I don’t want security and comfort anymore, I want Christ and His Kingdom.
15 Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, 16 making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.
Ephesians 5:15–16 (ESV)