It’s been a minute friends, how have you been? 😀
I do hope that you are well in spite of everything that has been going on especially with COVID-19. It hasn’t been easy to adapt to all the changes that this virus has brought on with it, however, I believe we are all still holding on to faith that this shall pass and hopefully things will go back to near normal. I would like to apologize for my disappearance and not putting out any articles the last week or so. I was not kept away by anything bad of course, rather there have been some changes in my life, which I am still navigating my way through and adapting to. However, I am still here and by the grace of God still doing well. In any case, I am back, and we are still going to continue on with this journey of faith, purpose and life.
Before we continue though, I would like to send out an immense sentiment of gratitude to all health care workers for the amazing work they are doing for not only COVID-19 patients, but patients across all boards with a variety of ailments. We thank you for your service and pray that God continues to guide, bless, protect and keep you safe. It’s been unfortunate though that some health care workers have been exposed to the virus and some even succumbed to the infection. My heart goes out to all the families who have lost a loved one, and no words could speak to what you are going through, but I pray that God brings you comfort during this time. To those patients who are receiving care and treatment, we remain steadfast in praying for your recovery (Isaiah 53:5).
Since the dawn of COVID-19, there’s concurrently been evidence of decisions and indecisions being made. This has majorly been linked to the novelty of this virus and the fact that we have honestly been learning everything about it as both the infection and fatality rate increases. Work done has been focused on understanding the nature of this virus enough to try minimize the rate of transmission, determine treatment options and at least get closer to a definite point of alleviation. We have countries going on lockdown, some making the choice of having their lockdown extending over months and other countries having perhaps a month long lockdown and eventually implementing an extension thereafter. This has been hard for many to adapt to, but it has been a measure designed to try minimize the traffic of people gathered in spaces and not adhering to social distancing guidelines. Also, this has been a measure instigated to decrease the rate in the infection and transmission rate. This has worked in some countries, where the people have tried to abide by the rules set, unfortunately in other countries the number of cases have increased despite these measures which is linked to a number of reasons. For one, in some countries, people have failed to comply because of ignorance and I think many still do not fathom the gravity of the situation which is just sad! In any case, Eswatini went on a 20-day partial lockdown which commenced on 27th March and was due to end on 16th March. However, based on trends and evaluations gathered during the initial lockdown period, it was determined that the lockdown would not be lifted, rather a three-week extension would be implemented commencing at midnight on the day the initial lockdown was due to end, and this was announced on 15th April. The unfortunate news though is that one fatality has since been reported, and my heart goes out to the family and I pray that God strengthens as well as comforts them during this time.
Now, let’s get down to a few lines on whats on my mind today…
On March 1st, I decided to supplement my daily devotional passages with the book of Isaiah, and I have been reading a chapter for each day all throughout March. Now, Isaiah has sixty-six chapters and I have been continuing to read this book thus far and I have learned so much which has not only strengthened my faith but my relationship with God too. Wednesday evening, I was reading Isaiah 46 and couldnt help but smile as I read through that scripture because it affirmed the fact that – God is the Alpha and Omega, He carries us through all things, that God is the sustenance of all things and He is incomparable. As I read through this scripture I was filled with joy which emanated from gratitude for having such a wonderful Father in my life who sustains, protects and loves me unconditionally. In essence, as I meditated over this passage I found a reminder in verse 10-11 that no one can ever disrupt Gods plan and purpose for our lives. Now isnt that just incredible? Well, thats God, He is the epitome of incredible!
The past few months I have shared quite a number of things with you inclusive of my struggles in general and how sometimes things got so bad that I felt blinded and lost sight of the purpose and plan God had for my life. Some days were harder than most, but I am thankful for the spiritual warriors in my circle with whom I would pray with in times of such distress. These individuals would stand with me in prayer, share the word to encourage me and in many ways than one, they endured the process with me; for that I will forever be grateful for having them in my life. I have seen my faithfulness to God paying off, I have seen God working in my life and I have found favor in Him in ways I never deemed possible because when I had all but given up, God showed up! (I will publish an article about my testimony soon detailing how and where Gods Grace has taken me).
Now moving on…
Last week was Holy Week which is an important time for us as Christians because we get to commemorate the greatest expression of love which God showed to us through offering His only son as a sacrifice to redeem us. Through this sacrifice He was opening a gateway for us to build a personal relationship with Him without having to go through the elders and having them speak on our behalf, but rather to create that bridge for us to get to Him;
- This sacrifice signified unconditional love;
- This sacrifice signified redemption;
- This sacrifice signified completion;
- This sacrifice signified finding your true purpose;
- This sacrifice signified the beginning of an unending relationship filled with peace, joy, kindness and consistency;
- This sacrifice signified victory and authority over all the spiritual forces in the heavenly realm (Ephesians 6:12).
- This sacrifice signified that God is the source from which we draw all things.
- This sacrifice was an embodiment of what unconditional love is and is meant to be; selflessness!
Each year we get to gather as Christians to celebrate this time, unfortunately with the coronavirus pandemic that was not possible. So, most churches had virtual sermons, others shared prerecorded sermons with their parishioners whilst those without excess to either, tuned into the radio for sermons and others dedicated themselves to praying and reading scriptures aligned to the significance of Holy Week. During that time, Jesus conveyed His love for His disciples through His actions and words, which He consistently did before the final moment when He was betrayed, tried and eventually crucified on the cross to Him declaring before taking His final breath that “It is finished”! Those final words meant that God’s purpose of love, forgiveness and redemption for us had been fulfilled and as such we had the right to live the life God had destined for us as well as be that which God has purposed us to be.
So, the trend is to have sermons in most churches from the start of Holy Week, which is Palm Sunday all through to the end of that week when Jesus is tried, crucified, conquers death and resurrects from the tomb. As previously mentioned, unfortunately we never got to have that, but instead we worked on a weeklong devotion in the word and worship. For my church, sermons were shared as videos from Thursday right through to Sunday and we were in communion together to celebrate. We may have not been in the establishment created to gather, however we were spiritually connected and as such gathered in that accord. Here is the thing, a lot of people believe that being a Christian is aligned with church attendance and if that never happens then it means you have fallen short of being a Christian which unfortunately is not true. Being a Christian is expressed through action, through dedication, through maintaining and abiding to the precepts as commanded by God. Church is not closed. Church is still open. We are the Church and each of our duties as a part of the body of Christ needs to be done regardless of whether we are in the designed establishment or not. So it doesnt just stop because you are suddenly not going to church due to the coronavirus. You can read the word, you can pray, you can honestly still maintain your purpose in serving God daily!
In a nutshell, I am grounded still and rooted in God. These are tough times but God still has us covered under His wings. May we continue to lean on Him for strength, and I would like us all to continue finding comfort, remind ourselves, believe and swear by Psalm 91. God is still God, despite this virus and we may be panicking but let us not lose sight of Him but let us continue believing in Him through all this, and firmly maintain a tight grip of His right hand. Let’s continue to pray for those infected, for the families who have lost their loved ones, for our economies, for the businesses that are suffering and for the individuals who have lost jobs. Let us pray for strength and an end to this infirmity.
Lastly, I would like to request that we offer any assistance to those less privileged and have no coffer to sustain them during this time. This could be donations in the form of food, clothing (in my side of the world winter is closing in) or anything. Let us help out where and how ever we can!
This too shall pass friends. God is faithful. Let’s be safe out there. Let’s keep up the faith. It shall be well!
Grounded in Faith