Comfort in Trying Times
(thoughts concerning the Corona Virus pandemic)
by Bob Burridge ©2020
As we face another world-wide crisis which threatens all of us wherever we live, we need to keep things in focus. On the one hand we all need to recognize the seriousness of the dangers we face from the Corona Virus. We need to take reasonable precautions to protect ourselves and those around us from this threat. On the other hand we need to keep in mind that we have assurances and promises God has preserved for us in his written word.
The Apostle Paul was bringing his amazing letter to the church in Rome to a close when he added in Romans 15:13, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.”
The word “hope” is not just “a cherished desire with anticipation” as the Merriam-Webster dictionary defines it. For those who rest in Christ, hope is more than a cherished desire we anticipate. It’s a confident trust that all God has promised, including his care and comfort, will certainly come to pass.
There are many helpful passages in the Bible that remind us that we never face dangers alone. God is there with us as our loving Father, our Bridegroom, our Good Shepherd who cares for his sheep, our Redeemer, and our unfailing and all powerful Lord. We may think of Psalm 23, Deuteronomy 32:11, and many more encouraging promises of God. One I find specially helpful is the reminder God gives us in Psalm 91.
In 1992 our home in Pinellas Park, Florida was totaled by a tornado. The storm came through on Saturday, October 3rd. I had completed my Sunday sermon preparation on Friday, the day before the tragedy took place. I delivered it on Sunday the 4th, the day right after the tornado. The text the Lord had put on my heart for that day was Psalm 91. It was by God’s astounding providence an amazingly fitting comfort to me, my family, and others in our congregation who also lost their homes and treasured belongings.
One year after that tornado took our home, the place we thought of as “secure”, I wrote a song based on that Psalm. I hope that Psalm, and perhaps even that song, will remind us all that while we face challenges, dangers, and the tragedies God allows to come into our lives, we have an all-powerful God who is there to comfort us when we come to him humbly through the finished work of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Our focus should be to worship and serve him in whatever way we can as we face the challenging circumstances that come along at each moment as God’s eternal plan unfolds. In whatever we do, we should do all for the glory of God.
Here is the link to that song along with its lyrics: “When You Live in the Home of the Lord“