I turned on the news today and heard the anchorman report that we might have to be quarantined for a few more weeks. It really doesn’t matter to me; for the past 22 days, I have been stuck on Saturday, and I have another Saturday tomorrow.
If you have been following along on social media during this time of quarantine you have discovered 1) Every pastor is now a televangelist; 2) The rest of the world has become comedians; 3) And then there are those rare few who can do both very well.
For instance, in my opinion, Michael Gabbert, pastor at Bixby, Evergreen, is a world-class preacher and teacher. He can craft and deliver a sermon with the best of the best, but I didn’t know he was as gifted at comedy as he is in teaching the Bible. During this time, I have been following him on Facebook, and I find myself waiting to see what he posts next.
On April 4, he posted: “Turns out my 3 favorite hobbies are: 1) Eating at restaurants, 2) Going to non-essential businesses and 3) touching my face.” On April 7, he posted: “Quarantine has turned us all into dogs. We roam the house all day looking for food. We are told ‘no’ when we get too close to strangers, and we get really excited about car rides.”
I think we are going a little stir crazy being quarantined, here are 10 signs you may be affected:
- You are beginning to believe Gilligan’s life on that island wasn’t so bad after all.
- You start your day by inventorying toilet paper.
- You forgot your son’s name … and he’s named after you.
- A feel-good sermon is one where the pastor preaches about eternal damnation and the lake of fire.
- You have been rotating the same seven outfits, and they are all pajamas.
- You end your day inventorying toilet paper.
- Living on the International Space Station is nothing compared to what you been through these last few weeks. They don’t allow kids in the ISS.
- You begin to believe family time is way overrated.
- You hear your kids praying for their schools to reopen.
- You have read this article at least a dozen times.
Going through this season of being quarantined has led many to experience a sense of hopelessness. Some are on the edge of financial hardship, bills are mounting, unemployment looms and with each day, any sign of hope is diminishing. You are at your wit’s end to know what to do with your children; you can only watch Netflix and the Disney channel for so long.
No matter what you are going through, God is faithful, and with Him, you can endure it: “No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, He will also provide a way out so that you can endure it” (1 Cor. 10:13).
Isn’t that incredible? First, the apostle Paul says there is no such thing as an uncommon problem. Do you think you have a market on trouble? Then remember Dolly Parton’s words, “Get down off the cross, somebody else needs the wood.” Look around and join the crowd. Having problems means you belong to the human race.
Second, Paul gives the encouragement that God is faithful. Faithful in doing what? He will not allow you to be tempted beyond the power He gives you. No matter what you’re facing, you and God can handle it… together.
Third, Paul offers some more good news: God is faithful to provide a way of escape, so you can endure the hardship. We feel locked into our cabins of despair because we look only at our circumstances. Instead, we should look at Christ. He’s holding the door open to provide a way of escape.
Anyone who’s ever had a pimple knows the longer you stare at it, the larger it grows. That holds true with other areas of life, too. No matter what your situation looks like, make a choice to seek the One who is faithful and has the keys to overcome. Jesus is still saying, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matt. 11:28).
And for all you parents who have had been locked at home with your children: Not only does Jesus hold the door open for you, but soon, you can show your kids the door, too!