Navigating through the present storms!
Pandemic! Covid 19 (who)! Ventilators! Social distancing! Face masks! Hand washing! Hand sanitizers! WFH! Quarantine! Lockdowns! Vaccines! Wuhan! Financial aid! Most infected! Zoom meetings! It’s been an unprecedented time in human history with the Coronavirus affecting 210 countries and territories. Two and a half million people have been infected with about one hundred and eighty thousand deaths. There is no respite in view as the virus defies known scientific theories. Borders shut down, economies slowly grinding to a halt and as of yesterday the price of WTI crude oil dropped to -4.7 per barrel which has never happened before.
This is just the beginning of the fall out. Even when the lockdowns have been lifted will life ever return to normal? Will handshakes and hugs be permanently removed from social etiquette and replaced by the elbow or foot shake? Will businesses recover? Will families who have been devastated ever be the same? What will become the new normal? So many questions and no real answers. There are as many conspiracy theories as there are homemade cures from the bizarre to the absurd.
The only thing that stands sure is God and His word. He is the same yesterday, today and forever. His promises are an anchor for our souls. What better person to write of His steadfastness than David. Between I Sam 18 & 19, David experienced twelve assassination attempts from Saul. He fought about 9 battles and experienced a plague in 2 Samuel 24: 10- 17 where 70,000.00 men were killed in 3 days. This surpasses the death rate of the pandemic, multiplied by days.
In the midst of these harrowing experiences he wrote Psalm 91. For me, verse 1 is like a summary of the whole Psalm. The Amplified version says he who dwells in the secret place of the Most High shall remain stable and fixed under the shadow of the Almighty. Psalm 31:20 talks of the secret place as God’s presence. How does this play out in the New Testament as we actually have the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, this Treasure in our earthen vessels? May I then paraphrase verse I to mean he who works and walks in the consciousness that God is with him, (Emanuel) will be emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually stable and fixed? It is only when we fellowship with the Holy Spirit aware that He is ever present that we can operate His assurance and security.
Psalm 91 is not a placebo or an incantation to recite to word off evil such as Covid 19. For me, it is a call for a deeper and closer work with God. There is nothing more we need to navigate in these stormy times. May the Holy Spirit in us help us.