The other day I went to fill up my truck and paid a dollar and seventy-five cents a gallon. That’s right: $1.75/gallon. I’m old enough to remember paying less than a dollar a gallon on occasion and I can recall how mad I was the first time I ever paid $1.50 a gallon, much less $1.75. Today, I was ecstatic to pay $1.75 although I didn’t like the reason why. The economy is tanking. That’s never a good thing. What a difference in perspective time makes. COVID-19 is not only threatening our physical well being but attacking our economy in the process. It has the potential to destroy us spiritually if we let it. The good news is that we don’t have to let it.
Welcome to Day 2 of The COVID-19 Devotionals. Several surrounding counties and cities issued shelter-in-place ordinances. Thankfully, Terrific T and I continue to stay healthy as do our folks and our loved ones. We got our new roof put on yesterday. Yay! Replacing our roof is a project we had planned before the October 20 tornadoes twisted through the area decimating homes, schools, and businesses.
That seems like a time far gone now. Our devotional today focuses on Psalm 46.
Be still and know that I am God. Stop striving and struggling and recognize that He is God. Step out from all the noise and focus your eyes on Almighty God. He is above politics. The Lord reigns above everything.
Verse 10 is a well-known, beloved scripture. Many of us have committed it to memory and it encourages us in unsettling times like these. Verse 10 is an anchor in a psalm resonating with triumph and confidence. Psalm 46 is a song of encouragement and of victory that reminds us that no matter what kind of trouble we find ourselves enduring, God is greater than our enemy. Written in remembrance of a time when God miraculously delivered the city of Jerusalem from its enemies, it reminds us of the power of the God we worship and serve.
For the choirmaster. Of the Sons of Korah. According to Alamoth. A Song.
1 God is our refuge and strength,
a very present help in trouble.
2 Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way,
though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea,
3 though its waters roar and foam,
though the mountains tremble at its swelling. Selah
4 There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
the holy habitation of the Most High.
5 God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved;
God will help her when morning dawns.
6 The nations rage, the kingdoms totter;
he utters his voice, the earth melts.
7 The Lord of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah
8 Come, behold the works of the Lord,
how he has brought desolations on the earth.
9 He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
he breaks the bow and shatters the spear;
he burns the chariots with fire.
10 Be still, and know that I am God.
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!
11 The Lord of hosts is with us;
the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah
Verses 1-3 speak to the power of our God. God is our refuge. The Lord is our strength. He is a faithful helper present in every storm. We can take courage in knowing God has our back. We can trust Him and find safety in His arms. He is our Great Protector in times of trouble. The Lord will see us safely to shore and show us tremendous blessings when we get there.
Verses 4-7 remind us of God’s presence during the trials and tribulations we face daily. You and I have encountered numerous obstacles and suffered several calamities in our lifetime. This is not our first rodeo. It’s certainly not God’s either. He was with His creation then, He is with us now, and He will be with us in the future, whenever the next big storm comes. With God, we will overcome this virus that is threatening our health and ravaging our economy. COVID-19 is a lung-eater and a money-stealer.
Verses 8-11 bring it all home. God brings peace where there is war. He calms conflicts. The Lord provides joy where there once was sorrow. The Lord invites us to join Him. He delights in revealing glimpses of our eternal future to us. Yes, God Almighty has a plan. Being in the center of God’s will is the best place to be amid the trials, troubles, and tribulations of this present world. We can take peace in knowing that whatever we’re going through today, the Lord of Hosts is with us. He is our stronghold.
Time of Reflection
No doubt COVID-19 has turned all of our lives upside down. Like so many of you, Terri and I are sheltering-in-place, working from home. It’s a little bit of an adjustment but we are both thankful for the blessings God has provided us. We have shelter. We are secure. My encouragement to you is to seize the moment. Make the best of it. Focus on what you do have and what you can do versus getting mired down in the negatives.
9 Things You CAN Do While You Are Self-Quarantined
- Enjoy going for a walk with your spouse, a loved one, or a friend. God gave us a beautiful day today. Make the most of it!
- Remember that project you never had time to get to? Well…? Now is the time. Imagine the satisfaction you’ll have when this is all over and you can look at that updated spare room, organized closet, or clean garage.
- Play some games. Go old school and break out those board games stashed away in your hall closet. Like our Mamas would always say: “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.
- Reconnect. Call those old friends you’ve been wanting to talk to but never seem to find the time to reach out to. It’ll be a blessing to you both. I’m sure of it.
- Read that book that’s been calling your name or watch that movie you’ve been wanting to see but were too busy to enjoy
- Memorize some Scripture. What a novel idea!?! Look, the truth is, you need God’s word more than ever today. Why not commit some of it to heart?
- Pray for those on the front lines fighting this deadly disease. Pray for your neighbors. Pray for your church family. Pray for your loved ones. Spend time with God.
- Serve others. Ask your elderly neighbors if you can get them anything at the store while you’re there. It will keep them out of harm’s way. They’ll be happy that you did. And so will you.
- Look up. Take a break from the news, weather forecasts, and all the other noise. Remember that God’s got you. He is with us. We are not in this fight alone.
God, I thank You because You are faithful. You are our refuge and strength in times of trouble. You are our ever-present helper in difficult times like these that we are enduring. We know that You are still on the throne and that You got this. Help us love You better during this harrowing time in our lives. Help us love our neighbors with the same amazing love that You showed to us. We pray for wisdom, guidance, and protection for our leaders. We pray for those sick and directly impacted by this sickness. God, we pray for the first-responders and all those on the front line fighting this evil disease. It is wreaking havoc on people’s health, spiritually, physically, emotionally, and economically. Rescue us from this storm! Deliver us from this evil! We cry out to You, O Almighty God! Lord, we need You. You are God and God alone. We put our trust in You and look forward to rejoicing alongside You when this enemy has been defeated. Praise You, O Lord. Praise You among all the nations and throughout all the earth.
Wrapping It Up
May this devotional series continue to remind you that God is in control even when our life is spinning out of control. Yes, COVID-19 is wrecking life as we once knew it. Yes, we are ready for the day that the Lord vanguishes COVID-19 back to the depths of Hell from where it came from. In the midst of adversity, you and I can trust in the Lord because He is trustworthy and faithful. You and I aren’t alone. God is with us. Whatever we’re going through know the Lord will ultimately use it for good, drawing us nearer to Him, growing us spiritually, and showering us with His love in the process. You and I can be confident in our ever-present helper, our refuge and our strength, God is for us, not against us.
Know, with certainty, that during these unsettling times, Terri and I are praying for you and your loved ones.
The Devotional Guy™
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Lockyer, Herbert. (1966). All the Books and Chapters of the Bible. The All Series. Zondervan Publishing. Grand Rapids, Michigan.