Within the past few days, life for those of us living in the U.S. has changed. In some other parts of the world this is nothing new. The current pandemic is a real threat—to the health of humans, and to our local, national and worldwide economy. How do you battle fear over the coronavirus (COVID-19)?
Actions that authorities have taken, along with the 24/7 media coverage, easily breed fear. School closures, widespread cancellations of events and empty store shelves where toilet paper and soap should be make us nervous. Certain groups of people have already had their livelihoods dramatically impacted. Every business is affected in some way.
For those of us who believe in Jesus, fear is not a viable option. Hundreds of times in Scripture we are told to fear not. One of my favorite passages is Jesus' words: "'I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But be of good cheer. I have overcome the world'" (John 16:33).
So how do you get to "No fear here"?
Remember God Is In Control
Do you for one moment think this is a surprise to God?
He knows the real truth about how this pandemic started. And He knows how it will end. He knows how many people will get sick (or die), and what the impact on the economy will be. He knows how governments and other authorities will respond and what our health care resources can and cannot do. And He knows how these events will impact you and your family personally.
And beyond knowing, He cares. About the whole situation, and about you personally.
We Still Face Troubles
Sometimes we think trusting in God's care means He will make everything OK. Remember, Jesus did promise tribulation! (John 16:33). We live in a messed-up world. We are in the mopping-up time in the battle between God's kingdom of light and Satan's kingdom of darkness. It's a gnarly time for humans to be alive in this world.
Jesus hurts when we hurt. He can miraculously bring meaning and good things even out of tragedy. But we will still face troubles. Deep troubles.
Wisdom and Trust
So, what do you do right now, today?
Use wisdom. Wash your hands. Practice social distancing. Calmly talk with your family about what actions you will take during this time. Then prayerfully survey your immediate world for how God would have you help others in need—elderly or sick, your workplace, your church. (And please, don't hoard toilet paper!)
And at the same time, stay on your knees.
Prayer changes things. Prayer is not a heavenly vending machine—put in a prayer and get out the blessing you desire. But prayer makes a difference. In the United States, our National Day of Prayer was heard by God!
Prayer keeps your mind in a healthy place. Especially in difficult times we must take our cues first from our heavenly Father. His shoulders are big enough to handle all your cares, both today and tomorrow. "You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You" (Isa. 26:3).
No Fear Here
Fear can rear its ugly head in your soul at a moment's notice. It's important to fortify your mind during these challenging times.
You can get our 40-day email devotional series, Freedom from Fear and Anxiety, by clicking here, or by texting the word "40DAYS" to the number 44222. (If you've been through this series in the past, contact me and I'll restart it for you.)
This email series will put God's Word in your mind each morning, along with a prayer you can pray out loud.
May you experience a supernatural level of God's peace and wisdom, knowing that He knows and cares about you!
Your Turn: Have you battled fear over coronavirus (COVID-19) in recent days? How are you going to embrace the peace that Jesus promised even in the midst of trouble? Leave a comment below.
Dr. Carol Peters-Tanksley is both a board-certified OB-GYN physician and an ordained doctor of ministry. As an author and speaker, she loves helping people discover the "fully alive" kind of life Jesus came to bring us. Visit her website at drcarolministries.com.
This article originally appeared at drcarolministries.com.
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