Jill Jarrell Newsome
For His Glory
By now we are usually seeing jokes about how many days til Christmas. Instead, we are seeing jokes about how slow time is moving. Today on Facebook someone posted, "Gonna ask my Momma if that offer to slap me into next year still stands!" I find myself naming all of the blessings from this difficult time. Some are silly but they are blessings to me during this time such as not a lot of traffic when I do go out, not wearing make up, not dressing up, walking Duke several times a day, spending a lot of time outside, visiting with neighbors most evenings - at a distance of course, that we can worship from our living room with our church family, using the things in my freezer, not spending money shopping, not spending much money on gas, having our family together, our boat is in the water, getting a lot of projects done at home, etc.
Other blessings are watching our neighborhoods and communities rally. Watching our churches gather as they are scattered. Seeing people seek comfort and hope through Jesus. Seeing so many people posting pictures of God's creation while they are on walks, many seeing these things for the first time. Many families with children are staying at home together and eating dinner together, not being on the run every night. If we look we can see the hand of God even in the midst of Corona virus.
Let's keep looking for what God is doing during this time. I love Romans 8: 28 and quote it a lot because I know God brings good from bad for those who love Him. "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose." When we change our focus to God it helps us focus on good. This will encourage others and a lot of people need encouragement right now. 1 Thessalonians 5: 11, "Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing." Others will see your peace. Psalm 119:114, "You are my hiding place and my shield; I hope in Your Word."
Someone shared an article with me that said in times of crisis, humans have a tendency to turn to religion for stress relief and explanation. They went on to say that the 2020 COVID-19 was no exception. Google searches on prayer have skyrocketed during the month of March when COVID-19 went global. It "surged to the highest level during the past five years for which comparative Google search data is available, surpassing all other major events that otherwise instigate intensified demand for prayer, such as Christmas, Easter, and Ramadan.” People are hungry for hope and peace. Isaiah 26:3, "You will keep him in perfect peace,
Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You."
This morning one of my pastors sent out a devotion and he said I could share this part. "For His glory...that is our desire, His and our purpose in life; that all of what happens brings glory to God, show Him as being our King of Kings and Lord of Lords. In that reality, our being saved through the blood of Jesus Christ, we can live and trust in faith that the best will occur in our health, 'in the name of Jesus;' in the lives of our loved ones, 'in the name of Jesus;' in our personal and financial welfare, 'in the name of Jesus'; in the direction and future of our nation and world, 'in the name of Jesus'; as we celebrate Easter, the love and mercy of God would impact the lives of the whole world 'in the name of Jesus.'" Let's keep watching for what God is doing during this pandemic for His Glory!