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Getting Back to the Basics

 

Last updated 5/26/2020 at 2:50pm

Not having lived through a global pandemic, every day may seem fraught with more uncertainty.

Here are some pieces of information regarding our present situation that I believe to be true:

• Some people have gotten sick or died, and it is a small percentage of the population.

• More people are in very serious need of daily food, monthly shelter, and steady employment.

• Everyone has been inconvenienced at the very least, some much more inconvenienced than others.

• We are moving into a new day in this situation.

Beyond these, we seem to get confusing or conflicting information from our leaders and experts.

There are some hopeful reports of people with antibodies, possible treatment, and a vaccine in the coming months. Many businesses have opened back up, adhering to safety guidelines. Our state data looks good. By acting early when we did to institute the guidelines, it saved lived.

There are also some concerning reports that a second wave will be much worse than the first. Many businesses have not opened back up. Our state data looks bad (or was manipulated to look good). By acting late when we did to institute the guidelines, it cost lived.

In times like this, it is good to remind ourselves of truths that should govern how we live each day, every day. We are not the only people who have had to deal with a unique and extremely challenging time in history. Solving the problem of COVID-19 will not solve the problems of poverty and inequity in this life, death, and other challenges. We are promised that we will have challenges in this life, and challenges are by nature not convenient.

Reading James 1:1-27, and asking God for wisdom to discern exactly what we individually can or should do (given the time, talent, abilities, people, and opportunities He has given us), can be very helpful. Below are some other passages to ponder, and to balance with James 1, considering the context of exactly when, to whom, and/or from whom these words came.

May God grant us all, from ordinary me to elected leader or national expert, His wisdom and heart for others and His steadfast love and endurance.

• Zechariah 8:16-17: These are the things that you shall do: Speak the truth to one another; render in your gates judgments that are true and make for peace; do not devise evil in your hears against one another, and love no false oath, for all these things I hate, declares the LORD. (ESV)

• Romans 12:1-3: I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies, as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that be testing you may discern what is good and acceptable and perfect. For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measures of faith that God has assigned. (ESV)

• Ephesians 2:8-9: For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is a gift of God, not a results of works, so that no one may boast. (ESV)

• James 4:14-15: Yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, "If the LORD wills, we will live and do this or that." (ESV)

Christian Ponder has been a resident of Lake Wales since 2001. He enjoys living in Lake Wales with his wife and two children.

 

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