The following is a verbatim Facebook posting by Joe Hanson, although my research did not show the originator of these words:
In three short months, just like He did with the plagues of Egypt, God has taken away everything we worship. God said, “You want to worship athletes, I will shut down the stadiums. You want to worship musicians, I will shut down Civic Centers. You want to worship actors, I will shut down theaters. You want to worship money, I will shut down the economy and collapse the stock market. You don’t want to go to church and worship Me, I will make it where you can’t go to church”
“If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”
Maybe we don’t need a vaccine, Maybe we need to take this time of isolation from the distractions of the world and have a personal revival where we focus on the ONLY thing in the world that really matters. Jesus.
I understand the author’s intent, but I have a different take on God using this virus as payback. We are naïve if we deny that in our generation, God has been dismissed, even though His first commandment lets us know that He has no intention of being given a standby role: “Thou shall have no other gods before me.” The real problem is that many Christians have a slew of delights, and Jesus does not top that list.
Yes, God has allowed this pandemic evil, but He did not initiate it or delight in it. He wants us to turn it into good. I am hearing of families who, for the first time in years, are eating together. If you’re like me, your email is filled with clever toilet paper slogans designed to make you laugh and prayer chain opportunities to bring you to your knees.
A group in Kansas City is making yard signs, thanking medical personnel and placing them along the entryways to hospitals, nursing homes and emergency facilities. Some contain scriptures, all to encourage and let these people know they are valued.
My dear friend Lael joined two other South Carolina neighbors on Palm Sunday as they sang together from their back yards and balconies. She admitted they did not sound like the YouTube balcony Italian opera singers, “but we raised our voices and hearts together.”
A relative is making face masks, using the pipe cleaners her neighbor shared with her, and Juliette, a friend from Massachusetts, organized an on-line talent competition as a fun distraction for local children and their families. She recruited judges for four categories (cooking, music, art and entertainment). Granted, her idea was far outside my realm of creativity, but children and parents were blessed because of her giftedness.
In California, the breakfast group of Howard’s, Dave’s buddy, has donated enough money for their favorite diner to supply lunch to the local firehouses and sheriff’s offices for a week. And this past Monday night, Fort Scott High School spring sports’ senior athletes and coaches turned on their stadium lights and stood outside their facilities (six-feet apart) while drivers in vehicles paraded by, honking their horns, as a sign of unity.
I could list many more examples of people turning this horrific evil into good, but the point is this: We can blame God, or we can blame ourselves for turning from Him and choose to be a blessing to others.
You and I both know which will help give God back His rightful place of honor.