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The coronavirus has altered life as we know it. This pandemic has brought us the staunch reality that we are not in total control and that there are other forces, evil forces, if you will, that can change the path we thought we were on.
Now, quarantines, the shuttering of schools, businesses, restaurants, movie theaters and concert halls are the norm. Does God have an answer for us?
Pastor Max Lucado, always a voice of faith and spiritual strength, is offering these words of wisdom, “I’ve been telling people, feed your faith and your fears will starve. But if you feed your fears, your faith will starve.”
Lucado has authored several books about God's promises. He spoke to Lighthouse Faith podcast to offer people hope as they deal with the global spread of the virus.
He says getting news and information is good but saturating yourself with it is not. It feeds your fears. He says, “Counterbalance that with reading scripture, with listening to worship music, with spending time in a prayer closet. You know, just those things ... you know ... feed your faith.
The COVID-19 is like another 9-11. After the planes hit the towers people ran to the churches, packing the pews; every day the doors were open to anyone looking for refuge. But unlike then, now the churches are closed. The gathering places for refuge and safety are part of combatting the problem.
So Lucado says it’s still important to stay in community even online through tools like Facebook, emails, texting, phone calls. “I know many pastors who are posting messages every day. I am. I'm gonna post a message, Lord willing, every day, just 10 or 15 minutes of encouragement.”
We may cancel Easter services, but the promises of Easter cannot be. That’s above our pay grade.
One of the most common questions he’s getting from people is, “Is God angry with us?”
His answer, God’s not angry. “He's not cutting us off. But he's saying, ‘Your priorities are misplaced. You're worshiping entertainment and you're worshiping savings accounts' ... And I think what God is saying is, 'I love you, but you're going to the wrong place for your fulfillment and your satisfaction.'”
Lucado is also offering words of hope as Christians prepare for the holiest time of the year, Easter. For the first time in centuries, churches will not be packed, will not be opened. Does that mean Easter is canceled?
Lucado reassuringly says, “We may cancel Easter services, but the promises of Easter cannot be. That’s above our pay grade. The promise of Easter is that Christ rose from the dead. He's defeated death and that He demonstrated his power over death by exiting the tomb.”
Lucado prays at the end of the podcast.
Here’s part of his message:
“I just ask a blessing on all those who are hearing these words. And that would include those who never call out to you, who feel distant from you, who really don't even believe in you. Lord, just love them. Just love them. Please call them to you. Reveal yourself to them so that they will know ... that you care about them. You've not forgotten them...
"You're a good God. God is with us. And you will get us through this. Lord, please have mercy.”