Fighting Anxiety in Pandemic

I have said, since I arrived here, that the “main thing” is threefold: Word, prayer and fellowship. This is because they are means to God’s sovereignly-appointed and happily-given grace, His gifts. They are the way God gives us Himself, in His Son, by His Spirit, until we see Him face to face. 

And now, one may be wondering, but what about the anxiety I feel, in the face of the coronavirus outbreak? For my health, or for my loved one? For my child, who works in the medical field? For my health-compromised spouse? Or for the “economic cure to be worse than the disease”? If what I’ve said is true – that those three means really are the main thing, then they should have the main place here, in this fight. They do; let’s see how: 

I start with Habakkuk 2:4: “The just shall live by his faith.” Habakkuk prays to God about the people of God, how they’ve strayed. So God tells Habakkuk not to worry; He will bring Babylonians to take them captive – that will fix it. But Habakkuk pleads for mercy for His people, because God’s “cure” will be worse than the disease, essentially. And to this reality that God says, “The just shall live by his faith.” The first thing we need to see is that God wants us to trust Him, more than anything. 

Then we fight for faith, with the tools He’s given us. We learn again to eat more than food and drink more than coffee, from the means of grace. We learn again what it means to not just read our Bibles, but to feed on God’s Word, and feast upon Christ. We learn to listen, as if for the first time, to God’s words – humble, like children, at the foot of their Father. 

Listening to the promise in Habakkuk 2:4: I will do you good.

We learn again what it means to pray. We fast. We beseech God to relent, but we also ask Him to bring revival to the cob-webbed parts of our souls. And others’. 

We involve others – over the Word, in prayer, again, like children. We let people in the back of the house, not just into the front parlor. We talk together, below religious niceties, about our anxieties, and also our sins, and we ask for help. We connect with God’s people, over the phone, or however we can. 

Through these means, anxiety may not disappear, but it no longer dominates. God dominates, that we may live by faith.