Friday, 13 March 2020 19:32

Living and Loving as Christians in a Coronavirus Age in Ethiopia

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We have the first confirmed case of COVID-19 here in Ethiopia. If we are to learn anything from other nations, it’s that this is the first of many cases. It is hard to know how to react and resume life in times life these especially as Christians. 

We start by remembering what we know and acknowledging the sovereignty of our Lord Jesus Christ even over microbes and cells. Yes, this pandemic, too, is well within His sovereignty. There is nothing that surprises Him, and He is never backed into a corner. We must then not be given to fear and panic. God Himself, in Philippians 4V6, tells us not to worry about anything, but to pray about everything. Take time to think through what fears are at work in your heart and in your community; and think of how best to respond in ways that are constructive and God-glorifying. 

Instead of panic and worry, make sure you plan wisely and well for yourself and those around you. 

Make sure you seek accurate, reliable sources to guide your actions. Now is the time to be very careful about who you listen to, and what news you spread. Heed the advice of experts on what to do to protect yourself and others; precautions are to be taken seriously because they are in place to protect you and others who may be more vulnerable than you. 

Most critically, we should be in regular prayer and consistently find ourselves in the Word of God to refocus our hearts on where our hope, courage, and encouragement come from. Make sure to pray for victims of this epidemic around the world; pray for the ones we’ve lost and all their loved ones. Pray for your community; for peace and hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. 

Remember as a Christian, your call is to missions, not isolation. Take precautions but also think of those around you who are particularly vulnerable to this virus (older men and women, and those with underlying health risks). Do they have enough food or medicine? Do they have lines of communication to you and others to ask for help? Being ready and available to step up is important to communicate even now as we prepare. 

Call your neighbors and those around you; ask if they are prepared, ask if they know what precautions they need to take and impart accurate information. Call, text, and email those around you and check in on them. Sometimes even just letting people know you are there and available to help should they need you goes a significant way. Think of your employees and their families; think of what you can do to support them if situations worsen. Think of the street kids and homeless in your area; what can you do for them? You can pray. You can share your food and water. You can share reliable information about precautions and symptoms to look out for. 

Finally, be prepared to suffer. Many who lived in times like these especially with a missional mindset often paid a price. Remember, we don’t serve because of an earthly reward because our hope is secure in heaven. We serve and we give at a personal cost to ourselves because our Lord Jesus Christ served and gave at great personal cost to Himself and His Father. Begin to pray now that you might be ready to step up and live out your faith when the time comes. 

This is our time, Christian. 

Keep serving God | Keep honoring God | Keep loving people. 

 

Diana Yohannes

Diana Yohannes is a writer, communications specialist, and a lover of Christ. Diana’s passion lies in countering narratives and rhetorics surrounding women with that God has to say about us. 

https://addisandotherthings.wordpress.com/
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