We are in the height of the pandemic. And the virus continues to spread like wildfire.
Loved ones are dying, small businesses are going bankrupt and domestic violence is increasing. Though we say we trust God in all circumstances, our minds are taken captive and fear continues to spread like wildfire.
In the midst of the virus and fear running rampant down our streets and barging in our front doors, I see one more thing beginning to spread. Hope. When reading Scripture, I often exchange the word Hope for Jesus. I think more often than naught they can be interchangeable in most verses.
Today is Passover in the Jewish faith. Remembering the story in Exodus where Moses is attempting to lead his people out of slavery, cruelty and fear spread like wildfire. The Israelites grumble and complain, Moses is afraid of his calling, and yet God reminds him that His name is “I AM.” Translated, “I have always been.” No matter the circumstances, no matter the outcome, no matter the suffering and disillusionment, God exclaims that He Is. He Has Always Been. He Will Always Be. And the best part is found in Exodus 3:12 where God reminds us all, “I will be with you.”
His presence commands the sick to be healed.
His promises invite fear to cease.
His people celebrate the Hope they’ve found in Jesus.
More than focusing on the spread of the virus and the fear of the unknown, let’s focus on spreading Hope.
As believers, we will celebrate the greatest miracle of Hope that’s ever been as we anticipate the upcoming weekend of Easter and Resurrection Sunday.
What if everything we did in the next few days: our words, our actions, our thoughts, our reaching out, all pointed to the Hope we have in Jesus?
What if we were passionate to the spreading of Hope and we refused to allow fear to be the common denominator in our neighborhoods and in our nation? What if we spread the good news stories coming from this pandemic and we squelched the negative news? (I’m not advocating being naïve and unaware; I am suggesting we be concerned and compassionate and acknowledge that fear is present, but we don’t allow it to rule our hearts, minds and actions.)
People need to hear about the Hope we have. Job 11:18 reminds us,“You will have courage because you will have hope. You will be protected and will rest in safety.”
I pray you’ll join me in offering those around us the greatest gift we can share. I’m encouraging us this week to spread Hope.
Michele Husfelt works with Ministry Development for NorthStar Women's Network. She wrote this blog on April 9 for NorthStar Women's Network.