“Give thanks in everything; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” (1 Thess. 5:18).
Even during a COVID-19 pandemic?
Yes, even during a COVID-19 pandemic.
Why should I thank God for something that is making people ill, something that’s killing people by the thousands, something that has brought our lives and economy almost to a dead halt?
Last week, I raised the question: Did God Cause COVID-19? That’s a tough one to give a black-and-white answer to, but I do believe God can use what’s happening to us to do good—to bring us to Him, to seek Him, to work His good and loving purposes.
The problem is we can’t see that. At least not now. So it’s hard to thank God when our first-responder friends are overworked and burdened, when a neighbor is in quarantine nervously waiting for test results, or you’ve lost your job.
Tomorrow is recognized as Good Friday. This is the day Jesus was crucified, suffering for hours on a Roman cross before He finally said, “It is finished,” and died. For his disciples, there was nothing good about Friday. His mother Mary saw nothing good about it. Consider how flippant or callous it would sound to tell Mary on Saturday: “Praise the Lord for what He did yesterday!”
On this side of the cross, we see the eternal good that came from Christ’s death, but on the other side of the cross, they only saw the death of their friend and loved one. They saw the death of a bright future. They saw the death of all their hopes.
It would sound equally flippant and callous to get on Twitter and tweet: “PRAISE GOD FOR COVID-19!”
What good could possibly come out of a pandemic? I can’t answer that because I don’t know. Frankly, I only see the sickness, death, and the massive threat to our economy. Who knows, maybe next year, we’ll see things differently—or it may be in thirty years or when we’re with Christ in His kingdom.
What I do know is that God is a good, good God. He doesn’t always spare us the hardships, but He is with us. He cares. Therefore, I trust His hand.
And with a full-on trust in God, I can also thank Him—even in the tough days.
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