For the Facing of This Hour

The pandemic we are facing as a planet has been likened to an invading army. President Trump has likened himself to a wartime President and has set the nation on a war footing. All the resources of federal, state, and local governments are being mobilized to fight this invisible enemy. We are being asked to wash our hands, disinfect surfaces, and practice “social distancing.” Yet, the virus continues to spread largely unimpeded.

I am currently reading the book of First Samuel in my private devotions. Chapter 17 tells the story of David and Goliath. Goliath was a giant of a man. The Bible says Goliath was nine feet and nine inches tall! He was a “man of war from his youth.” In contrast, David is described as a youth, probably a teenager. He was a simple shepherd untried in battle. Yes, he had successfully fought off lions and bears who threatened his flock, but he had never faced a foe like Goliath. David’s confidence was in the Lord. That was his real strength.

Covid-19 seems like a Goliath to us, a gigantic and intimidating foe who threatens us morning and evening. Our government leaders, doctors, nurses, therapists, lab technicians, police, and first responders are akin to the armies of Israel. They were doing all in their power to hold the Philistines at bay, but with only limited success. We do trust in those whom God has placed over us. As the Apostle Paul says, they are God’s servants for our good (Romans 13:4), but like David, our ultimate trust is in the Lord God of Hosts.

1 Samuel 17:47 stood out to me today. David speaking to Goliath says, “For the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give you into our hand.” God will give Covid-19 into our hands. Our government will come to our aid. Our doctors will discover medicines that mitigate the impact of the virus on the human body. Our scientists will create an effective vaccine to inoculate us, but our ultimate hope is in the mercy and the power of God. May we be like fearless David. May we be like the person described by the Psalmist: “He is not afraid of bad news; his heart is firm, trusting in the Lord. His heart is steady; he will not be afraid, until he looks in triumph on his adversaries (Psalm 112:7-8).”

Let us pray,
O Lord God of Hosts, Covid-19 seems like Goliath to us, an unbeatable foe, but the battle is Yours, and You will give this enemy into our hands. Help us to be like fearless David who had the courage to stand up to a mountain of a man. Make our hearts firm. Help us to trust You in these uncertain and frightening times. Make our hearts steady. Deliver us from fear. For the battle is Yours, O Lord. You will triumph over all our foes; in Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.