Mark 9:49-50 “Everyone’s going through a refining fire sooner or later, but you’ll be well-preserved, protected from the eternal flames. Be preservatives yourselves. Preserve the peace.”
How we work through the global pandemic is a refining fire. Showing compassion, grace, and mercy to your neighbors is part of it. Helping others in need, running errands, providing food, increasing giving as you are able, are part of your response. Do you preserve the peace? Do you lend a helping hand?
The Voice has a note in this chapter about the depth of evil we face. “It seems that although the disciples have faith that they can heal the boy, they are spiritually unprepared for the depth of evil residing in the world. They need to be saturated in the presence of God to face the challenge.”
Be saturated in the presence of God
Our time in prayer needs to saturate us in the presence of God. Reading his Word, meditating on it, praising him in our prayers, and with songs, sitting silently to let him speak to us, and thanking God for every gift, these all help to bring us into the presence of God. This world becomes increasingly evil. The times are filled with hate, greed, oppression, and loss.
Until a few years ago, we didn’t understand the depths of evil residing in the world. We thought things were bad in some places where some bad men had taken over. But surely not in the “civilized world.” It only took a few years for things to globally become so filled with evil that many cringe in their hearts.
And then it spread. The evil attacks us all. And we see the greed apparent in our leaders. We understand the corporations for the oppressors they have become. The lack of needed healthcare and equipment worldwide to take care of the current pandemic. Poverty, death, and sickness have taken up residence in our wealthiest cities, our hospitals, the homes of many vulnerable and marginalized people.
Bring hope to the hurting
As sad as our world has become, we can fight. We fight through prayer, through our giving, through our actions and our words. Let us take a stand against this evil and push back. Make sure we urge for more restrictions on companies who take advantage of their employees. Increase help for workers everywhere. Open our hearts and countries to the needy. Bring peace to people everywhere but especially close to home.
Pray with me
Lord, help us to be Your prayer warriors. Fill us with Your presence and peace. Show us the blessings You provide for us every day. Give us opportunities to help others by giving, shopping, encouragement, and prayer. Help us seek Your grace and mercy not just for us but for all. We love You, Lord. You are our Hope, our Savior, and our King.