In the last few weeks, news updates about COVID-19 have increased exponentially. Certainly we have to remain aware of what is going on around us, but when we give so much of our attention to events that are beyond our control, we can lose sight of the things we should be taking control of. In these difficult times, each of us are faced with the choice of how we will respond to our circumstances. In the midst of these circumstances, we should choose prayerfully and cautiously how we continue to live out our faith before an audience that has little or no faith. An audience that has placed their hopes in everything “but” Christ. A huge population of people that now observe those false hopes crumbling before them. A Sovereign indictment to a practical mindset…. “Leaving the crowd behind, they took Him along, just as He was, in the boat. There were also other boats with Him. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke Him and said to Him: Teacher, do you not care that we perish? He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Peace Be Still.” Then the wind died down and was completely still.” Lk. 4:36-39 In gleaning this particular text today I realized a few things that truly spoke to my heart. 1) After the Disciples had been with Jesus throughout the regions, they witnessed miracles, observed mercies and experienced providential compassion in ways that only a few had seen. At the first crisis however: the Disciples asked a question that each of us will inevitably ask somewhere along the way as well. “Does thou not care that we perish?” 2) “A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped.” Without Christ’s allowance of the squall to raise exponentially, the Disciples would have continued to handle matters by their own experiential abilities. 3) “He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Peace Be Still.” Then the wind died down and was completely still.” The Divine timing of the Master is beyond finite means. As in Ecclesiastes 3, there is a time for all things. His counsel will stand with His eye upon every nation. He stands not aloof, looking the other way in the Heavenlies, nor is His Divine allowance arbitrary. How will we respond as Christians? Ephesians 6:10-18 has a common exhortational thread running throughout. “After doing all you can to “Stand, Stand having…..” The Word stand in the koine greek is: (histemi), and is defined as: “To continue Covenant.” Will we stand when others are falling all around us, will we continue covenant, that others may see what real faith looks like? Will we “esteem others above us as the water rushes over the bow and threats of going down are more imminent than ever before? Brothers and sisters: when I think of the word “Stand.” I naturally think of our Nation’s motto: “United we stand, divided we fall.” When I think of Standing, I think of Standing before the one that has equipped us to stand. And I think of believers “Standing Together, before An Audience of “One.” Friends -Continue Covenant with us as we continue Covenant with you and those we serve. On Christ, the Solid Rock I stand… My hope is built on nothing less Than Jesus' blood and righteousness; I dare not trust the sweetest frame, But wholly lean on Jesus' name. On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand; All other ground is sinking sand. When darkness veils His lovely face, I rest on His unchanging grace; In every high and stormy gale My anchor holds within the veil. On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand; All other ground is sinking sand. .
The Prisoner’s Hope will continue to “Stand” in the face of adversity, difficult times and financial unpredictability. We will “continue covenant” serving those we are called to serve.
Some of our mentees have lost jobs, some of our impoverished families are struggling greatly. We will serve as we always have, with the assurity that Christ has called us “for just such a time as this.”
Your continued support (at any level) is more needed and appreciated than you may know at this time. Your prayers are equally as important.
May the Lord Bless each of you throughout this difficult time. We are always here for any of you. If you need assistance – do not hesitate to call.
The whole team at
The Prisoner’s Hope