These are some of the most surreal times. In the years to come, there will be much ink spilled trying to dissect and analyze what the world is now undergoing. Dissertations will be written and papers will be presented at various academic conferences attempting to present the reasons for the dislocations, market volatility and cultural disruptions currently being experienced by some or even most within our society. The church is called to a special task during these incredibly disturbing times. What is it?

     The church is called to preach the gospel and to make disciples of all the nations. The church’s mission has not changed in the least because the God we serve reigns above all the tumult and chaos that grips the nations. Praise the Lord! The advance of the kingdom of God is not dependent on the amount of toilet paper available on the shelf at Price Chopper. God’s work is not halted by a run on canned goods at Costco. The psalmist notes:

Our God is in the heavens;
    he does all that he pleases.
Their idols are silver and gold,
    the work of human hands.

And…

O Israel, trust in the Lord!
    He is their help and their shield.
10 O house of Aaron, trust in the Lord!
    He is their help and their shield.
11 You who fear the Lord, trust in the Lord!
    He is their help and their shield. 
(Psalm 115:3-4, 9-11 ESV)

     Are you filled with any fear? Trust the Lord. He will be your help and shield. And what should the church do? Let us love and look after each other. Let us seek to minister to all those around us, especially those belonging to the household of faith. Let us be examples of patience and love toward our neighbors because we know that the foundation of our lives cannot be shaken. Is it okay to prepare? Absolutely. Should we give in to panic or fear? Absolutely not. Has your schedule shifted so much that you find yourself at home with more time on your hands than you typically have? Turn Netflix off and spend a few moments with the Word of God. Be resolved that this crisis will be used by you (the Puritans would have said ‘improved’) to grow spiritually and deepen your relationships with family and friends. Seek the face of the Lord and pray for a revival among the people of God. Pray that God will graciously use this situation to reveal to the world their insecurities and to lead them to find peace through Christ. I am confident that God is using his church to bless individuals, neighborhoods, and nations during this season of difficulty and turmoil.

     Finally, this Sunday, Charles and I will be posting a discussion, a possible new ministry called ‘The Pastors’ Roundtable.’ We will be tackling, with tremendous love and mixed with robust theology, the issues facing The Road today. If you are interested in being a part of that conversation then please email us your questions very soon. We can be reached at xodrules@comcast.net (Dale) and ackmannc@theroad.church (Charles). If you need any special ministry over the next few weeks (like grocery delivery) then please let us know. The elders and deacons of The Road are available to serve. May you see God’s providential mercies and faithfulness with increasing clarity in the days and weeks to come!

Love in Christ,

Pastor Dale