This is not a season to clamour for fame, just let God do what He’s supposed to.
In Jeremiah 28, there is a prophet who in all likelihood tried to go one up on Jeremiah by declaring freedom to the people of Judah. He claimed that God had informed him that the yoke by Nebuchadnezzar will be broken and the people who were taken to Babylon including the items in the temple will be brought back to Judah.
2 “This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says: ‘I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon. 3 Within two years I will bring back to this place all the articles of the Lord’s house that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon removed from here and took to Babylon. 4 I will also bring back to this place Jehoiachin son of Jehoiakim king of Judah and all the other exiles from Judah who went to Babylon,’ declares the Lord, ‘for I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon.’”
He even took the wooden yoke on Jeremiah and broke it as a demonstration of how God was going to do it. This was Hananiah’s way of showing how great he was as the “chosen” prophet by God to presumably deliver the message. In modern times, this is like an influencer’s “claim to fame” stunt, all done for the purpose of making it go viral.
10 Then the prophet Hananiah took the yoke off the neck of the prophet Jeremiah and broke it,
The tragic end to that false prophecy by Hananiah led him to death because God regarded his act as a rebellion approach, teaching the people how to disobey God by believing in stories concocted by man. Of course, prior to his demise prophet Jeremiah had actually rebuked Hananiah after receiving word from the Lord and believe it or not, Hananiah died just within two months of that lying prophecy.
15 Then the prophet Jeremiah said to Hananiah the prophet, “Listen, Hananiah! The Lord has not sent you, yet you have persuaded this nation to trust in lies. 16 Therefore this is what the Lord says: ‘I am about to remove you from the face of the earth. This very year you are going to die, because you have preached rebellion against the Lord.’”
17 In the seventh month of that same year, Hananiah the prophet died.
I asked the Lord, what is it that I or we can learn from here because in all honesty, my mind was rather cluttered, and colloquially “jammed” up, because of the many things swirling in the air in this Covid-19 season, quite literally.
After chewing on His word for some time, I think it may perhaps be to call out those who are trying to make a name for themselves by going to the extremes and being dramatically foolish at a time when God needs to just finish His work. To these busybodies, they have failed to realise that this is in fact God’s time, not theirs or even ours, and we should obey His instructions to let Him complete what He has set out to do.
What about our needs then?
I believe God will take care of us even when He attends to His agenda. Yes it is a tight season right now, with only a small fraction of the world working to sustain the economy but the bulk of us have been shunned from new contracts, not forgetting how some customers have resorted to cancelling long term contracts due to the financial strain they are under (originally written on 2 April 2020). Can we blame them? Is that then a betrayal of the understanding vendors and clients have with each other? I think we have to adopt a big picture thinking and to do that, we must step back and look at what God is trying to do – in this season, for us and for the world.
Covid-19 has come as a sudden plague that struck the world right at its heart. Countries and corporations the world over have been bending their backs just to secure their people and their business. Some have also resorted to hideous tactics for the sake of survival. As for the frontliners, they are trying their level best to revive the patients in the hospitals. Whichever vocation or side of the fence you’re sitting on, the infectious Covid-19 is already something that we can hardly stop and in no better way to say this, we need our Abba Father to extend His mercies on the souls that are perishing on the hospital beds as we “speak”.
For those at home, we also need to plead with the Lord for His wisdom because some among us are already struggling for the next meal tomorrow. Even more tragic is some have been living from paycheck to paycheck and this lockdown has really done nothing but barring them from the opportunity to earn and thereby restricting them from feeding and fending for their families. What then are these unfortunate souls to do?
- Humanitarian works have gone to the forefront to feed those in need and rightfully so since they have been called into this noble territory even before Covid-19.
- In public service, both the police and army have been mobilised to defend their respective countries from declining into a free fall, and this is hardly new because this has been their call of duty even before the pandemic began.
- The hospital staff, existing and retired ones, have been volunteering as well as called back to work tirelessly in what they do best. This is another example of what life purpose looks like when they commit to it and perform to their best.
For the rest of us, I believe God has also a place for us to undertake our purpose. We have been called to do something before and through this time, we need to buckle down and believe God must have had a plan for us all before and after Covid-19.
If He had wanted us to switch course, He would have told us so in our own private moments and when we are especially sensitive to the Lord’s prompting. But otherwise, we should all stay put in our chosen industries and vocations so we can, in our very own way, contribute to the peace for God to complete His job. But does He need us to do that? Not likely but it helps for us to do so because in obliging this task, we are being obedient to His call.
May the Lord keep you safe in this lockdown season and away from Covid-19. I pray that the Lord will heap lots of confidence in you during this time of restricted movements. I ask that the Lord will impart you wisdom and clarity as to what you are supposed to do so you will emerge unscathed after this time of confinement. To take courage, let us invest faith and prayers in the Lord so we are strengthened spiritually and not be perturbed by the worldly challenges. Even if we have to find alternatives to make a living, especially for those who are enduring the greatest challenge of their lives by being laid off, I pray that God will have mercy on your soul and that your cries will be heard by Him. The Lord has His plans, this is His time, we must trust Him, in Jesus name, Amen!