Will Christians Share their Living Water in the Corona virus Desert?
April 27, 2020
God-followers need to revisit all they know about God’s miracles in barren places, cause people are parched and dying in this Coronavirus desert. This thing we thought would be over in a couple weeks is like a relentless, life- threatening sun. Those movies where our hero is trapped in the wastelands with nothing but cactus and sand. Occasionally writers give him an abandoned cabin with a few supplies. More often, he staggers along until he drops and lays motionless, face down in the sand, until someone comes to the rescue.
The pandemic is sucking small businesses dry and shuttering small towns based primarily around tourism. Personal checking accounts are dried up. Life savings and retirement funds evaporating. As painful as all of this is though, the most important emotional quality this virus is affecting, is hope. When you are in a barren place, without God or a paycheck and cannot feed your family, that is a desert. When you cannot get needed medical treatment, that can be life-threatening in a desert, without God.
This can be such a moment for the body of Christ to rise in our culture with the hope of Christ. Will we seize this moment? Will each one of us do our small part? Cumulatively we can affect enormous change in our culture’s overall mental state by speaking and living hope in the face of hopelessness.
We know a wonderful secret about God. Some of his most powerful works happened in deserts. When we are face down in the sand, he shows up. We know these stories well. Are we going to live and speak like we believe they are true? Do we believe that what God did for others he will do for us? Do we believe that God is the same yesterday, today and forever?
Our heritage, as God’s children, is brilliant with desert story adventures.
Moses received his call to leadership in the desert- Exodus 3
A supernaturally burning, yet not consumed, bush became a meeting place between God and Moses. A meeting that changed world history. God will call some of us up to new positions of leadership in coming days. Are we faithfully tending the few sheep we are responsible for right now, in our desert? That is where God changed Moses’ character from hot-headed murderer to bold, patient leader. Mostly. Still, if Moses had not allowed God to refine his temperament before he took the reins of leadership… I think the beleaguered leader might have murdered a lot of sinful Israelites himself instead of letting God deal with them via snakes and plagues. What are we doing to grow in God right now?
God performed many miracles during the Israelites desert journey.
-The pillar and the fire Exodus 13:21
-The Miracle of the Red Sea Exodus 14
-Manna Exodus 16:31
-Water from a rock Exodus 17
-Clothes that never wore out Deuteronomy 29:5
What are our needs in this desert and the needs of those around us? The ones that cannot be met by humans right now. This is but a set up for God to do miracles. Can we ask God to stretch our faith enough to pray wild prayers, believing for provisions and healings for ourselves and others?
God sent the apostle Philip into the Gaza desert to share the gospel with an Ethiopian court official- Acts 8:26-39
This Ethiopian eunuch received the good news about Christ which Philip shared, and asked to be baptized. God provided water. In a desert. Then to seal the deal, God disappears Phillip from the desert, right in front of the Eunuch and his entourage. This man worked for the Queen of Ethiopia. Think this conversion experience might have influenced his speech and behavior when he returned to the Ethiopian court?
This desert of ours is going to provide opportunities for us to share the gospel with people we would not intersect with otherwise. God sent Philip to Gaza, just for this man. Are we willing to obey some unusual sounding directives from God, like Phillip?
God trained David to be a strong king during his years in the wilderness -1 Samuel
David spent many years on the run from Saul in the Judean wilderness. During that time, God trained him to be a mighty warrior, and gathered around him other men of strength and valor. They fought epic battles on behalf of several kings. All this trained David for the day he would lead Israel into battle as king, vastly expanding Israel’s territory.
The small shepherd boy with good aim, became a warrior whose strength in battle sent fear into the hearts of Israel’s enemies.
Consider how God might be trying to train us for greater battles to come during the ones we are fighting right now in this wilderness.
In the desert, Jesus created the definitive template on casting down Satan – Luke 4:1-13
Jesus showed us how it is done, meeting the enemy at every turn with the Word of God. Are we speaking the Word into our desert temptations?
Hope into hopelessness
Faith into Fear
Provision into Lack
Joy into sorrow
We must all choose how much we will allow God to work on us right now. Do you think our next assignments might depend on how cooperative with are? The original journey from Egypt to the Promised Land was eleven days. Eleven. Israel parlayed it into forty years due to disobedience.
I encourage you to write down insights and knowledge God shares with you in this wilderness. I challenge you to pray for yourself and others boldly, based on the Word. Write those requests down and keep track of what God does when possible. Speak and pray into the deserts of those who are face down in the sand without God. Are we willing to allow God to move us beyond any natural timidity and boldly share the Living Water with those who desperately need it?