Yesterday we went down the mountain to Colorado Springs to see if we could find some cupcakes to take to our granddaughter for her 9th birthday. We had one hour before a Zoom call scheduled with our Celebrate Recovery National Team. So we decided to go in Costco and get a few more things. We pulled up in the parking lot at 9:00. Costco opens at 10. There were 2 long lines of people with shopping carts wrapped opposite ways around the building. We got in line. They opened the doors early with employees directing the traffic calmly into the building.
Everyone was quiet. Everybody was on a mission. We saw a friend and prayed for them silently. I was so thankful for the way people acted in Costco. The toilet paper shopping cart line formed from the back of the store going back towards the check out lines. Nobody got angry as the employees allowed one case of toilet paper and two cases of water for each person.
I was reading in I Corinthians 10 this morning about the Israelites wandering in the desert for 40 years was written down for us as a warning to follow God and not grumble like the Israelites. They didn’t have toilet paper or bottled water! Fast forward to the Corinthians’ culture that was filled with moral depravity. Paul gave the Corinthians strong encouragement about temptation in verse 13.
Fast forward again to today. The news shows so much anger and turmoil going on. Many people are grumbling, what are we going to do? We can’t survive without going to the church on Sunday morning! We can’t make it without our Celebrate Recovery meeting!
Paul said in I Cor. 10:13:
1. Wrong desires and temptations happen to everyone, so don’t feel singled out.
2. Others have resisted temptation and so can you.
3. Any temptation can be resisted because God will help you resist it.
God helps us:
a. Recognize those people and situations that give us trouble.
b. Run away from anything we know is wrong.
c. Choose to do what is right.
Pursue God’s people for encouragement, support and strength. The church is not in the building. The church is God’s people! Talk to your Accountability Partners, Sponsor and Mentors all throughout these weeks we are asked to practice social distancing.
Instead of grumbling about what we don’t get to do, there are positive things we can do.
Paul’s charge to Timothy in I Timothy 6:11 says, “But you, man of God, flee from all this (he just said in the previous verses to stay away from people who just want to argue) and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, endurance and gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith. Take hold of the eternal life to which you were called when you made your good confession in the presence of many witnesses.”
Paul uses active and forceful verbs to describe the Christian life: flee, pursue, fight, take hold. Let’s have active faith. Let’s obey God and follow Him with courage.
Now is the time for us to be strong in the Lord and give others hope.
We all have more time right now to get into God’s Word while we are home. Fill your mind with praise and worship music. Saddleback worship has created a Songs of Hope Spotify playlist that will remind you of the hope we have in Jesus.
Let us not complain about all the things we are having to give up during this pandemic while people all over the world are suffering. Let’s practice the compassion of Jesus. Be creative in ways you can help in your community. Seek out the elderly to help shop for them for their groceries.
Let’s have a plan and a purpose during this pandemic.
We already have the prize of an eternal inheritance!
Now is the time to share the peace that passes all understanding.