I have personally felt a lot of uncertainty. As I have watched the news, seeing unemployment rise to record-breaking heights, I have worried about family members who have lost jobs. As I have talked to my mom, hearing her worries about finding toilet paper and avoiding exposure to COVID-19 to protect my dad who has a heart condition, I have imagined life without them. As I have listened to friends struggling with a sense of isolation, I have wondered how long these "shelter-in-place" orders will last.
I have had a lot of time to worry and imagine the worst. And the hardest part has been the sense of distance I have felt from my church as we struggle to navigate a digital medium to maintain some sense of community and worship. Even as I have become more aware of the limitation a digital medium for church can have, I have also gained a new respect for what God can accomplish through these humble means. They will never replace physically gathering with God’s people, but they can remind us that God is still merciful and has not abandoned his people.
Today, I want to share with you a message from Pastor Adriel Sanchez about the peace that God can give us in the midst of this hour. As he sought to encourage his church in the midst of what is as much a spiritual trial as a national pandemic, drawing from John 16, he said this:
One of the beautiful things about Jesus is that he always tells the truth. He doesn’t tell the disciples here in the passage, "Hey everything is going to be fine. Following me looks like smooth sailing." No, he says, "There is going to be tribulation. There are going to be difficulties. But you can take heart, you can have peace even in the midst of this time." And that’s what I want to encourage you with, that truth today that despite all the things that are happening right now, you, even in this hour, can have peace, the peace that comes through Jesus Christ.
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