The Guardian (Charlottetown)
A prescription for COVID relief
In the midst of all that is going on with the COVID-19 pandemic, God provides a remedy. His prescription for relief in time of trouble is his presence and his peace.
“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
Sure, there may be some peace and assurance we get from our public health office or even the current situation we have in Prince Edward Island. However, you may have realized that this is not a long-lasting peace. It comes in and out like the tide in Prince Edward Island. Many find themselves struggling with fear and anxiety. Peace and rest are hard to find and if found are short lived.
Jesus is offering His presence and a peace that is supernatural and lasting.
The apostle Paul in Philippians chapter 4 also speaks of this greatest, most secure and lasting peace of all. Its source is God and it is beyond this world.
Information and news that come at us day to day in our current crisis only leads to further unrest. The problem is that there are so many other voices and messages vying for our attention at this time. Sadly, most of these are negative and not filled with hope.
Here is a word of God’s truth for this season we need to take to heart. This is God’s message and news. It’s by asking and receiving this message that God gives, we are brought into a state of security and rest in the midst of the storm.
“Don’t be pulled in different directions or worried about a thing. Be saturated in prayer throughout each day, offering your faith-filled requests before God with overflowing gratitude.
Tell him every detail of your life, then God’s wonderful peace that transcends human understanding, will make the answers known to you through Jesus Christ. So, keep your thoughts continually fixed on all that is authentic and real, honorable and admirable, beautiful and respectful, pure and holy, merciful and kind. And fasten your thoughts on every glorious work of God, praising him always. Follow the example of all that we have imparted to you and the God of peace will be with you in all things.” (Philippians 4:6-9 TPT)
We are to turn to God, who is always there to help in the time of trouble. We are to turn our mind and heart towards Him. His Word and His promises are to be our focus and attention.
Today we have a choice of what news or message will we allow to control our hearts and mind. What we set our minds and hearts on will dictate our emotions and behaviour. The Bible says, “as a person thinks in his heart so he is”.
This is a faith decision. What or who will you trust and put your confidence in?
I choose to trust God, He who says, “I am the same yesterday today and forever”.
In conclusion, let this familiar Psalm fill your heart and mind today.
“The Lord is my best friend and my shepherd. I always have more than enough. He offers a resting place for me in his luxurious love. His tracks take me to an oasis of peace, the quiet brook of bliss. That’s where he restores and revives my life. He opens before me pathways to
God’s pleasure and leads me along in his footsteps of righteousness so that I can bring honor to his name. Lord, even when your path takes me through the valley of deepest darkness, fear will never conquer me, for you already have! You remain close to me and lead me through it all the way. Your authority is my strength and my peace. The comfort of your love takes away my fear. I’ll never be lonely, for you are near. You become my delicious feast even when my enemies dare to fight. You anoint me with the fragrance of your Holy Spirit; you give me all I can drink of you until my heart overflows. So why would I fear the future? For your goodness and love pursue me all the days of my life. Then afterward, when my life is through, I’ll return to your glorious presence to be forever with you.” Psalms 23:1-6 TPT
Noel Mal is with Community Worship Centre, Stratford. A guest sermon runs regularly in Saturday’s Guardian and is provided through Christian Communications.