As I laid in bed with the covers over my head because I felt feelings of discouragement filling my soul I began to ask God, "cover me Lord, give me strength to continue, speak to me now" almost instantly I felt a desire to just get up and open my bible app on my phone. When I did on the screen read this verse and these words:
Ephesians 4 MSG
TO BE MATURE
" In light of all this, here's what I want you do. While I'm locked up here, a prisoner for the Master, I want you to get out there and walk-better yet run!- on the road God called you to travel. I don't want any of you sitting on your hands. I don't want any of you strolling off, down some path that goes nowhere. And mark that you do this with humility and discipline- not in fits and starts, but steadily, pouring yourselves out for each other in acts of love, alert at noticing differences and quick at mending fences"
I sat up and re-read that about 3 times! Wow, God- your word is alive and active! God knew exactly what I needed to see and in the version (hence the message translation) in which I needed to see him speak. This familiar passage of living a life worthy of calling in which I have been called took on a totally different meaning for such a time as this! I received the direct instruction that spoke to the very thing that was trying to get me to throw in the towel!
I want to share with you my "tips" for surviving COVID!
Covered- Remember that we as believers are covered with Gods grace, his hands of mercy, his love, his protection and we are covered with the blood of Jesus. If you need to recite this to yourself daily or many times a day please feel free! Choose a scripture of reference reminding you of who you are in Christ!
Opportunities for growth are forever present during this season! If you are anything like me, I started off this "quarantine" so encouraged and motivated! Most days you could find me cleaning out drawers, dusting, and organizing however, as the days began to settle in and as the kids school work multiplied it has not been all stars and rainbows! The stretch for growth has developed into me asking God to increase my level of patience and kindness. In this season of opportunity, ask God to show you the areas within you and around you that he is applying pressure so you can grow through what you are going through. These are opportunities- yes they may be challenging ones but let the pressure push you into purpose.
Vital to seek God daily in prayer and study his word! Because many of us are working from home we have more time to purposely make room for God. One of the most beneficial and essential things we can and should be doing is seeking Gods face in prayer and fellowship with him! This is vital! As the church doors are closed, we the body of Christ- the church- are still open and in fact are more sought after now. So we have to make sure we are staying "woke" alert and are still renewing our minds daily! Now is the time to enhance, develop, build upon that personal relationship with Christ and develop the true culture of ministry within our homes.
Inspire and seek inspiration! As someone who desires to be an inspiration I too must seek ways to encourage myself and fill my spiritual cup! I am so glad God is placing and has placed people in my life who can sharpen my iron as I sharpen theirs. I encourage you to put on worship music in your home, engage in biblical virtual bible studies,hop on a prayer call or two, or three! Read more, listen to a podcast, engage with friends/family and stay connected with other like-minded individuals to remain encouraged, uplifted and inspired! Continue to find creative ways to keep your spiritual tank filled!
Don't give up and discipline yourself! I know it's so hard most days to find that inner strength to keep going! It really takes effort and consistency to get out of bed and actually get dressed for the day! It's a choice of discipline that we have to create in order to keep going when the comfort of life and the couch seems far better than getting up and keeping busy and active! Lately, I have had to dig deep within to keep motivated and the day I decide to "take it easy" this for me turns into the next few days which in turn makes it just that much harder to pick it back up! BUT even if that's the case, DON'T GIVE UP! Just pick back up- not looking back and restart your day 1!
We will survive COVID-19! We are already surviving! I can't wait to see what lies on the other side of quarantine.
As I write to encourage you, I write to encourage myself! As I write to inspire you, I write to inspire myself!
Tunai Anderson, @tunaiscloset