Peace in Pandemic & Pandemonium

My word of the year for 2021 came early again—last August. So you’d think I’d have posted this sooner, but that’s another story. 

“Okay, but God,” I said, “I don’t think I like the implications of that word.”

“Adapt.” He said

“Can You take that one back? May I have a different one? — Or perhaps You can add to it please, Lord?”

“Trust. Follow.” Jesus said.

Adapt doesn’t mean compromise truth, change the goal, or deviate from the message and call God gave us. But sometimes the route may require prayer and re-reckoning. We may need to adapt our sails to the change in wind. The only thing certain is uncertainty—that and God’s faithfulness.

I like smooth sailing but sometimes Jesus calls us to walk on stormy seas, to step out in obedience, push through the fog of doubt, lock eyes with Him and follow. In a sea of uncertainty Jesus is surety.

“Onward.” He says.

Of late we’ve seen things thought tested and true turn topside down, unravel, and topple. And there’s more to come. The world has lost its bearings in the mire of pandemic sin, a condition more deadly than the virus as it targets the heart and soul. But we can choose a different route—to chart our course with the Word of God which enables us to navigate through life’s craggy channels and to safe haven in Jesus and one day to Heaven.

“God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, Even though the earth be removed, And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though its waters roar and be troubled, Though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah.” (‭‭Psalms‬ ‭46:1-3‬ ‭NKJV) ‬‬

The instability of our world just serves to point to the steadiness of Jesus. How quickly the untethered world spun out of control as man reaps the consequences of living in a fallen world and of the unrighteous decisions and indecision of some. But the good news is God is still within reach, within the breath of a humble, sincere, contrite heart’s prayer. The King of kings is still on the throne. All things aren’t good, but the Bible says all things work for the good of those who love God. There is peace and security in that.

Why are you cast down, O my soul? And why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; 
For I shall yet praise Him, The help of my countenance and my God. (Psalms 43:5 NKJV)

These trying times of revolving restrictions, chasing the virus, and quelling chaos resemble a merry-go-round ride we didn’t ask for or an unwelcome game of whack-a-mole. While some states in the USA have loosened restrictions recently, sadly other cities and nations (including where some of my family lives) have tightened due to an uptick in COVID cases.

We can become faint when we fail to see the purpose because we focus on the pain rather than recognize the season as part of God’s plan.

The current headlines of chaos and cultural crisis indicate we are walking in unfolding Bible prophecy, which is why I’m not panicked (as turbulent as the times are) because I know the end of the story.

A friend recently said people were wondering what God was doing in all this. My question is, what are we doing for God in all this?

God is not on lock down. God is not taken by surprise, He is not looking down from Heaven saying “Oh my God! I can’t believe this! Now what?” He is the God who sees, the God who hears. Jesus promises to lead us, never leave or forsake His own. He is the Way and the way maker when there is no way.  

SONG: Jonathan McReynolds | God is Good

Perhaps it’s high time to take time to re-evaluate what’s of value. The purpose of this life is not prosperity or the pursuit of pleasure, but salvation and sanctification—to know God, to make Him known, and prepare us for Heaven.

Easy doesn’t build Spiritual muscle. We’re not called to easy, but to adapt, to grow in Christ and glorify Him.

Don’t let fear and despair box you in. Let’s find and fulfill the role God calls us to play for such a time as this. Jesus offers His peace in pandemic and pandemonium, and joy no matter the journey.

STORY & SONG: United By Music | Another in the Fire by Hillsong | Spotify

Tactics for Turbulent Times (And my cranberry apple crisp recipe to follow)

1. Deposit double the positive to counter the negative. This includes the news, social media, and the company we keep.

There is always opportunity in adversity. What work has God called you to in this season?

But I know, somehow, that only when it is dark enough can you see the stars. – Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

2. Intentionally focus on what you can do rather than what you can’t, even if it’s way different from what you’re used to. Adapt. It beats doing nothing and sitting in the pit. 

SONG: JOY | For King and Country

3. Make Bible reading and time spent in God’s presence a priority. Remember, the greatest work that moves mountains is the faith filled prayer. 

SONG: African Children’s Choir Performing Look up Child by Lauren Daigle

4. Take comfort in the unfolding Bible prophecy we see, as it proves the truth of God’s Word and promises.

“Now when these things begin to happen, 
look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.” (Luke 21:28 NKJV)

“But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!” ‭‭ 
(2 Timothy‬ ‭3:1-5‬ ‭NKJV) ‬‬

Curious about end times prophecy? Click HERE to download my compilation of Bible verses to encourage and equip, including some about signs of the end times. (No email required)

SONG: JJ Weeks Band | Ahead of Me

5. Don’t isolate. Initiate. Find someone to encourage, you will find yourself encouraged too.

6. Spend time outside in God’s creation. Even standing on my step for ten minutes with my face to the sun helps me. Bask in the sunshine with the SON-shine. If we want to reflect the Son, we must bask in His Light. — Be still and listen.  

7. Read encouraging posts like this: L-I-S-T-E-N,  Six Ways to Avoid Pandemic Distraction by Jeannie Waters

8. Practice Gratitude. Write three things a day you are grateful for. Consider inviting family and friends to participate in this activity at dinner. Take it up a notch and tell each person one thing positive about them. 

9. God is worthy of honor in all weather, not just fair weather; He dwells in the praises of His people. So when all hell breaks loose, it’s a good time to raise our eyes to Heaven and praise Him. — Turn up that Jesus music!


SONG: Michael W Smith | Way Maker (Live) ft. Vanessa Campagna & Madelyn Berry

10. Remember, temporal trials can’t compare to the reward of eternal treasure. The Great Commission hasn’t changed. Jesus said:

“Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.(Mark 16:15 NKJV)

Billy Graham preached the old time and timeless Gospel, but he wasn’t afraid of progress, of using available tools to aid in reaching people. See, stand, speak the truth in love and give the Gospel Truth to the world!

Jesus said, “I must work the works of Him who sent Me while it is day;the night is coming when no one can work.”
(John 9:4 NKJV)

“But you should keep a clear mind in every situation. Don’t be afraid of suffering for the Lord. 
Work at telling others the Good News, and fully carry out the ministry God has given you.”
(2 Timothy 4:5 NLT)

Rise and resist pandemic fatigue. Push back. Turn every assault of the enemy into an opportunity to grow stronger and closer to Christ, to bring Him glory and encourage others.

The difference for those who believe in Jesus is not the absence of the shadow but the presence of the Light. – Pastor Rick Warren

Yes, it’s dark out there, but light dispels darkness. Let’s go!

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7 NKJV)

PLEASE SCROLL FOR RECIPE, RESOURCES AND VIDEO BELOW:

And here’s a little help to tell others the Good News: Receive my free updated downloadable Gospel tract: Good News in a Sea of Bad News when you subscribe to my newsletter HERE. 

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PLEASE SCROLL FOR RECIPE AND RESOURCES BELOW:

VIDEO: But God by Coach Mark Prasek of PJNET.tv

PJNET Live hosts interviews with Christian writers, speakers, and politicians Monday – Thursdays at 9 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., and on Fridays catch Steve Hazard’s “My Perspectives” where he wraps up with a recap of the weeks cultural and political events at 10 p.m. Eastern time. Click here to watch live on PJNET.tv!

Apple Cranberry Crisp (Fine fare to help combat pandemic fatigue)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees

Combine in bowl for topping:

1 1/2 cups all purpose white flour (*OR (A) substitute healthier yummy version:

1 cup whole wheat flour and 1/2 cup white flour OR (B) 1 cup whole wheat flour and ¼ cup almond flour and ¼ cup white flour)

1½ cups Oatmeal 

1 cup white sugar

1/2 cup dark brown sugar (Do NOT use more brown sugar or you will have apple sog instead of apple crisp. And, if you use all white sugar, it won’t be nearly as flavorful.)

Melt in microwave:

2 sticks margarine (OR butter—but if you use butter, you will need to add about a 1/2 Tbl. more as there is less liquid in butter.)

Add to melted margarine or butter:

1 tsp. vanilla 

1/2 tsp. almond or maple flavoring (optional)

Combine dry and wet ingredients

Peel, core and slice 10 apples and place in a 11 X 13 pan. 

Mix in 1/2 cup fresh cranberries 

Sprinkle with and mix in:

1½ tsp. cinnamon

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1/4 tsp. ginger (optional)

1/4 tsp. cloves (optional – but this sets it apart:)

1/4 tsp. allspice (optional – but this sets it apart:)

Spoon topping over fruit. 

Bake at 350 degrees for about 50 minutes, or until you see red bubbles. 

And since this includes oatmeal, it counts as breakfast! 😉

*You may substitute granulated erythritol (a natural sweetener) for sugar, which comes in both white and brown sugar flavors. (Please note erythritol is a little sweeter than sugar.) 

Online Resources, New Books, & Events to Encourage

*A Ministry Opportunity! Become a Focus on the Family Digital Volunteer

Lee Strobel on Focus on the Family – Trusting God in Worrisome Times (Part 1 of 2)

Help for Families During the Corona Virus Crisis [and beyond] from Focus in the Family

For KIDS! (Big and small.) Adventures in Odyssey Club- Action packed dramatized audio stories and activities to entertain and equip the entire family. Free Trial of Adventures in Odyssey Club from Focus on the Family:

An invitation and Instructions on how to participate in #HealthyFaith Chat on TWITTER! Bible based Q&A chats to equip, encourage, evangelize.

Visit the #HealthyFaith WEBSITE for detailed schedule and topics and more.

For Some Comic Relief Visit: TheBackPew.com – Cartoons and blog by Jeff Larson “Sharing clean humor and God’s truth.”

NEW RELEASE: The Chosen I Have Called You by Name: A Novel Based on Season 1 of the Critically Acclaimed TV Series, Jerry B Jenkins

PRE-ORDER NOW: Victor! The Final Battle of Ulysses S. Grant, Dr. Craig Von Busek

NEW RELEASE: Simply Song of Solomon: A Book on Biblical Sex, Larry and Geri Priest

NEW RELEASE: Dugout Devotions II, Del Duduit

NEW RELEASE: LINKED for Couples Quick Guide to Personalities: Maximizing Heart Connections One Link at a Time, Linda Gilden and Linda Goldfarb

SUBSCRIBE to the Tattoo it on Your Heart Newsletter for notifications of new blog posts, occasional offers and FREEBIES like this: CLICK HERE for updated Good News in a Sea of Bad News! 2021 free downloadable Gospel tract with new artwork by Christian cartoonist and writer, Jeff Larson

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Wondering what in the world is going on? Need some good news? DOWNLOAD MY FREE COMPILATION OF BIBLE VERSES TO ENCOURAGE AND EQUIP (INCLUDES SCRIPTURES ON THE LAST DAYS)

Click here for Live Stream of Church Services from Victory Chapel –Sunday 11 a.m. & 7 p.m. and Wednesday 7 p.m. Eastern Time. – Replay available afterward.

© 2021 Rachael M Colby | Tattoo It On Your Heart

Author: Rachael M Colby

Born and raised in Jamaica, award-winning writer Rachael M Colby resides in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Wife, mom, bona fide beach bum, avid Tweeter, and creator of TattooItOnYourHeart.com—a place for seekers, followers, and writers. Rachael writes to glorify God and encourage others. She addresses culturally relevant questions connecting everyday life with Christianity’s answers through Christian inspirational, motivational, and apologetic articles, devotions, interviews, poetry, and children’s picture books.

9 thoughts on “Peace in Pandemic & Pandemonium”

  1. There is so much here! I highlighted a sentence and then found another in the same paragraph. This: “ Adapt doesn’t mean compromise truth, change the goal, or deviate from the message and call God gave us. The only thing certain is uncertainty—that and God’s faithfulness.” And #2 do what you can even if it’s different, #6 bask in the Son-shine and the sunshine – makes SUCH a difference!, and #8 practicing gratitude. And you know I love Look Up by Lauren Daigle! So much here. Thank you!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Rachael, what a powerful post to focus our eyes on Jesus. I love this thought: “A friend recently said people were wondering what God was doing in all this. My question is, what are we doing for God in all this?” And thank you for linking to my post. I hope it serves as a blessing.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Adapting is often hard, especially in such challenging times as we have been through this past year. You’ve given us some wonderful strategies to help us through these hard time. The Cranberry-Apple Crisp sounds awesome!

    Like

  4. Most inspirational post Ms. Rachael. I agree ma’am; let’s flood the world with twice as much “God-positive” as “satan-negative”! Loved this thought ma’am. #MakeAmericaMoralAgain

    Like

    1. Yes, JD, #MakeAmericaMoralAgain – and the surest way to do that is to #GetAmericaBornAgain 🙂 Pray! Send revival, Lord. Help us to be your faithful witnesses. —
      Hey, JD, you make me smile every time I see your name, and every time I read your writing.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. WOW Rachael!
    This really packs a spiritual punch! Thanks for the call for us to seek after the Lord and the things that build each other up rather than the world that adds weight and keeps us stuck in the muck and mire. This is a message every church and every believer needs to share! Thanks for your willingness and passion in writing! Your brother in Christ! ~ Ben C.

    Like

    1. your kind encouragement, not just here but for my writing journey. Thank you for your prayers, your convicting counsel (don’t stop) and your example of diligence in pursuing all God calls you to. Blessed to call you brother in Christ.

      Liked by 2 people

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