Going Back is Not an Option!
Guest Blog by Dr. Jim Grant
Exodus 14:11-15; 15:22-25; 16:1-12; 17:1-3
Grumblings, fear, obstacles and impatience. As we come out of this pandemic, many are starting to devise “way forward” plans. When we read about Israel coming out of Egypt, we find that at every turn the people GRUMBLED at Moses – not the LORD GOD, but Moses. Leadership must always be on display during and after a crisis. As Pastors, State and country leaders all across the globe look to move past the quarantine orders and try to move their respective areas back to a “Normalcy,” there will be must scrutiny about plans and progress.
I have written a couple Facebook entries that expressed the concern that people, institutions, churches and governments will try to “Go Back” to what life was like before. To me that is like trying to put the genie back into the bottle after it has been let out. Israel always wanted to GO BACK to Egypt when something became inconvenient or uncomfortable. Even when they were on the cusp of going into the Promise Land the first time, many let their fears and anxieties rule the day. Something that Israel never did learn the during the 40 years of “Wilderness Wanderings” was that GOING BACKWARDS was not an OPTION. No matter the problem they faced going forward [armies in pursuit, no water, no food, or giants in the Land] going back to what Egypt offered was never considered by GOD. It was HIS plan that Israel should always live in the Promise Land. He made this known to Abram, Isaac and Jacob multiple times.
Now, as Christianity has stepped up during this pandemic to make sure that services and care for their congregations took place; the NEXT STEP is a vital one. Will Churches and Believers move forward? During this critical time, there has been great outpouring of people providing humanitarian relief and support – AMEN. But we must remember that the CHURCH must be the Light in the World not Government bail outs and stimulus packages. I laud the great benevolence and care provided by the masses – But I know they are looking to get past this time and return to their normally comfortable life.
This begs the question: what have we learned from all of this?
- In difficult times mankind will pull together to help those in need
- Governments will try to eradicate the problem
- Money will be the first choice to eliminate the discomfort from the crisis
- The Church can be counted on to COME out of isolation to be a Light to the World
- People will always grumble against Leadership
- There will always be those who rebel against the PLAN
- People are more in a hurry to get past an issue than to learn the LIFE LESSONS of going through it
- People are always in a hurry to get control back of their lives
- God is God in the good times and the difficult times
- Life adjustments must be made individually, not levied by Public opinion
- Mankind can live without all the excesses; basic needs always outweigh the wants in a crisis
These are just some thoughts I have about this phase of the pandemic we are experiencing. The bold question to be answered by all of us; believers and non-believers alike: WHAT DID THIS PANDEMIC DO TO ME? WHAT DID I LEARN ABOUT MYSELF? God has provided this time for a reason. If we only look at the minute details of the pandemic, which I am sure many books will be written about- then we have missed this ETERNAL MOMENT!
I think this pandemic is a wake up call to the Church to get busy with God’s mission of saving the Lost through the Gospel and charity. In that this is a global problem I also believe it is a warning to mankind to become human again. Mankind had gotten to a point of such myopic living the reins had to be pulled back. A third thing I think should be that we learn what is essential and what is luxury. I had hoped we would stay in this until Christians become unified and collaborative – my fear is we haven’t learned anything.
So Going Forward, not Backward what is it that the LORD GOD wants you to learn and do?