Coping — and Overcoming — During the Pandemic

With all that’s going on now (Spring 2020), it’s easy to feel frustrated and on edge.  For some of us, seemingly everything has changed, and so many things are out of our control.

But God.

But God?

But God!

God still sits on His throne, and He is almighty, all-powerful, and cares about each one of us deeply.  Yes, that includes YOU.

In the Bible, the Apostle Paul teaches us to be thankful in all circumstances (1 Thessalonians 5:18).

The more we thank God and praise Him in the midst of difficulty, the more our focus shifts away from our problems and toward God and His ways that are so much higher than ours (Isaiah 55:9).  In this way, God resumes His rightful place on the throne in our heart, because when we focus on our problems, they become our gods.

But how do we do that when we are deeply hurting, or scared, or stretched to the breaking point?

The Good News is that we don’t have to fake it.  We can pour out our hearts to God — the good, the bad, and the ugly — and the Holy Spirit intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words (Romans 8:26-27).  So even if we can’t fully express ourselves in words of prayer, it’s OK — God knows.  He hears.  The book of Psalms is full of examples of how David, a lowly shepherd who became King of Israel because he was a man after God’s own heart, poured out his heart to God.  See, for example, Psalm 6.

Pour out your heart to our loving God, and then find a few things to be thankful for.  In time you will be able to begin with thanksgiving knowing that God cares for you and is bigger than all your problems.

Soaking music, or other relaxing music, can be particularly helpful.  So can routines, including reading and reflecting on a daily devotional such as Jesus Calling (book) by Sarah Young.  Visit the Resources page for more information on Soaking prayer music and on the Jesus Calling devotional.

Saturate yourself in God’s word, rather than the latest news, and it will be easier to receive God’s peace and wholeness.

Seek out community.  If you can get out, go for a walk with friends, spend time in nature, sit in a sanctuary.

Receive God’s healing for yourself and intercede for others.  Pastor Debbi Mygatt of Eastward Community Church offered a wonderful service including communion and healing prayer on April 4, 2020, which can be seen on their facebook page.

A lot of ministries have been sending out messages related to COVID-19. Two of our favorite posts in March 2020 were:

* Quarantine Content for the Family, by Cornerstone Action

* Pray to End COVID-19, by SIM
SIM’s home page also has links to those 10 same points in French, Spanish, and Portuguese, and if you have the latest (March) version of the PrayerMate app, you can find them there.

These are challenging times, but if we use them as an opportunity to draw near to God, He will draw near to us (James 4:8).

May the peace of Christ be upon you and your loved ones.