Colin Morrow, 20 March 2020
Matthew 8:23 – 27
Then He got into the boat and His disciples followed Him. Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke Him saying, “Lord save us! We’re going to drown!”
He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.
The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the wind and the waves obey Him.”
So often, it is easy to forget as we follow the Lord that He can and does sometimes lead us into storms or times of trouble. The church, and indeed everyone on this planet, is now confronted with just such a time as what man has called COVID-19, or the Corona Virus, takes hold.
The waves are breaking over the boat. The world and its leaders are feverishly baling the water, yet the boat continues to sink; the virus still spreads. People are being isolated or are self-isolating. Sickness leaves many ailing and death confronts some. The global economy is proving to be fragile; shelves in those reliable supermarkets are now proving to be unreliable as stock runs low through panic buying and hoarding by some.
As a church we are tempted to focus only on the storm and not the Saviour who controls the storm.
Before this storm abates, many will be questioning and even challenging, “Is the God of love really in control or … should we look for another?”
Is that where you are at? Or are you already being challenged in this vein by those over whom you have been appointed as pastor and under-shepherd?
If so, turn to Him in prayer. Plead with Him, “Lord save us! Stop this storm, this pestilence that you control.”
Our Lord has chosen to let the world become united in fear of something which is invisible to the naked eye. What is He saying? Is He calling the church to be faithful in calling people to repentance and faith? Is this His wrath being revealed? I’ll let you answer those questions.
But as you look to Jesus, the One who can instantly quiet the storm, be refreshed in your answer to the question, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves [and the COVID-19 virus] obey Him!”
Hang in there. Don’t despair. Even if death confronts you … our Saviour has already conquered that. The hope we have in Him is sure and certain.
Lead your people, lead the secular world. Love and care.
Obey the law of the land on meeting sizes. Use the technologies God has revealed. Don’t neglect meeting together “virtually” or really when it is safe to do so.
As your Moderator, my wife and I have been directly affected as we are currently self-isolating. We have recently returned from visiting missionaries overseas and we too are obeying the government’s isolation rules. I ask you to pray for our health at this time.
May God bless you at this time. Trust in Him. Don’t despair. The victory is won.