Pastor Darren’s Devotional: Kingdom Blessing
This is a remarkable time in history when everyone seems to be going through the same things. Hard to believe but as I write this there are still a handful of countries that do not have any confirmed cases of COVID-19. Nevertheless, I think we can say that the whole world is experiencing its effects. Fear of sickness and death, restrictions on freedoms, and anxiety from social isolation hover like a cloud over us all. For some of us who have not been greatly affected thus far, this time has been one of concern and inconvenience. But for many, the physical, social, and emotional effects of this have been devastating.
Our hearts are heavy for those in our church, our families, and our communities who have experienced illness or maybe even the loss of someone they knew from coronavirus. We worry about those that live alone, who do not have loved ones nearby, or are isolated because they have lost their places of social contact and fellowship; or those that have lost their jobs, their means of income, and live on very little. While it feels like we're all living on the margins of society these days, these people have been the hardest hit. And as the church, God calls us to intercede for them and to think creatively about how we can love and serve them during this time. If you know of anyone in this situation, please let us know.
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus teaches about the Kingdom of God and His abundant blessing, but what may be surprising is that He begins with those that know and experience hardship and those that are humble before God. Matthew 5:3-8 says "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God."
Scripture can be a great source of encouragement during this time. One of my favorite verses about God's sovereign care is 2 Chronicles 16:9 which says "For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him." The Lord actively looks for His people to grant them strength. In the midst of the fear and distress that has gripped many in our world today, may you find strength in Christ our Risen Lord, and may we be extensions of His kingdom blessing to those around us.