For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7 NLT
It can almost feel like things in our world are changing by the hour right now. People are wondering what’s next, what should we do, and what will this mean for the months ahead. Those are all valid questions. As you explore and answer them, we want to provide some encouragement to help in your journey. We know these circumstances have not caught God by surprise, and as we look to him, he will encourage, provide, and protect us.
Below you’ll find 5 responses we should have in this season and well as key verses from the Bible about fear, anxiety and worry. We hope that you’ll take time to read these Scriptures and include them as you pray. You might read through these daily, post them on a mirror, or write them in a journal. God put these verses in the Bible for us for times like these.
What should be our response?
1. We should respond with Faith.
God is still on his throne! He is still in control. But the enemy wants us to be driven by fear, but God wants us to be driven by faith. This is a time to be believing God is greater than this virus. Let’s respond with faith.
2. We should respond with Prayer.
Though it’s always good to pray and draw close to God, this is a great time to get close to the Lord. “Come near to God and he will come near to you.” James 4:8a NIV Through challenges, we have the opportunity to grow closer to God by praying. We should also pray for our leaders in our country, for the doctors and medical staff, and for this virus to be eliminated.
3. We should respond with Wisdom.
Wisdom helps us know what to do, when to do it, and how to go about it. We all need wisdom from the Lord. We need wisdom as we lead our homes, deal with coworkers, lead our groups and move forward. “If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.” James 1:5 NIV Let’s ask God for this wisdom and he will give generously to us.
4. We should respond with Hope.
Though we don’t know how long this will last, we know it will only be for a season. There is always Hope with God in the equation! “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13 NIV God wants to give us a hope that is unshakable!
5. We should respond as a Church.
[HEADING] Look to the Lord and he will give you peace and strength!
Though it might seem unusual because the church is meant to gather, nothing can stop the church. “And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.” Matthew 16:18 NIV God wants to use us to connect like we never have before. Let’s engage in our community like never before! Let’s be a light to everyone and the world!
“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”
“When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.”
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
“Peace is what I leave with you; it is my own peace that I give you. I do not give it as the world does. Do not be worried and upset; do not be afraid.”
“When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought joy to my soul.”
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”
“Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
“Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”
“Leave all your worries with him, because he cares for you.”
“Do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. Life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?”
“The Lord is my light and my salvation-whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life-of whom shall I be afraid?”
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
“‘For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you. Do not be afraid, for I myself will help you,’ declares the Lord, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel.”
“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.”
“The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me? The Lord is with me; he is my helper.”
“The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them.”
“I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears.”
“Jesus told him, ‘Don’t be afraid; just believe.’”