When we can’t even go to church, trust God
Change. Some may like it while others don’t. Change seems to be the theme of the COVID-19 pandemic for most people. The loss of jobs, the miles put between friends, and the feeling of being unproductive while stuck at home are just a few of the changes that we have encountered in recent weeks. Our daily routine has been twisted, leaving us in a state of confusion, wondering what to do with our lives. The one place where we hope change does not happen is the Church. The Church is supposed to be our firm foundation in this time of trouble, right? News runs rampant that churches are closing their doors due to safety concerns and are switching to an online format. Oh no! What could this mean? Fellowship would seem to be lost. Worship with other believers is gone. A place to worship God at, which is far cleaner than your own room, is all of the sudden missing. But wait a minute! Why does panic grip us when it seems that our “firm foundation” is closed until further notice?
Placing trust in the church building as the “firm foundation” gives little hope for the person who is seeking a place to worship. The hymn, “The Church’s One Foundation” proclaims boldly that “the Church’s one foundation is Jesus Christ her Lord.” Amidst the storms of life and the change that comes with it, Jesus Christ is the firm foundation for the Church, not the church building. The Church (the body of believers in Jesus) finds assurance, peace, and true worship in Jesus Christ. No matter the building shape or size, we are worshiping the Lord, who created us to be in a relationship with Him. Psalm 113:3 puts it well in stating, “From the rising of the sun to its setting, the name of the Lord is to be praised.” This is great news! The church building does not have to be the only place we ever worship God in our lives. Whatever we are doing and wherever we are doing it, we are to praise the Lord with joyful hearts.
As we worship God from our homes, it is good news to know that God assures us that He is with each one of His dear children. Many times in the Bible, God assures the Israelites that “He will not fail you or forsake you” (Deuteronomy 31:6). Applying this to our lives, we can rest in God’s presence because He never abandons us in our tough situations. Life around us might change here and there, but the God of the Israelites never changes. Along with this comes one other amazing fact in that God’s Word never changes, either. God’s promises throughout His Word never fail. The Word of God will never fail to accomplish the purpose for which God has sent it. Isaiah 40:8 states, “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever.” That’s powerful. Storms of life may shake us a little bit, but holding on to the Word of God strengthens us to trust in our firm foundation, Jesus Christ.
The grave is still empty. Our debt has been canceled. Jesus Christ took the sins of the world upon Himself on the cross. Why? Because He loves us so much! Coronavirus, or anything else for that matter, can never separate the Church from the love of Christ. God is still at work through the Church during this time. We are called not to go to church but rather to be the Church. Jesus taught that we are to love one another as Christ has loved each of us. As God is at work, rest in His presence today. Isak Olson [FLBC junior] is a member of New Hope Lutheran, Enderlin, N.D.
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