An Invisible Enemy
A life-changing crisis often motivates a person to go on a deeper spiritual search. A loss, a trauma, a transition, or even an illness suddenly disrupts our life and compels us to find meaning to our suffering, and a new purpose in living. Recently, a tiny virus caught us all unaware. We were unprepared for what followed: people were locked up in their homes with hardly any physical contact with the outside world. All the super-powers with their mighty weapons stood helpless in front of an invisible virus which brought the world economy to a standstill. We, who took everything for granted, were brought to our knees. We, who thought medical science has the answer to every illness, have been proved wrong.
In times like these, many are worried and fear for the future. But Isaiah 27:3 promises, “I, the Lord, am its keeper; every moment I water it. I guard it night and day so that no one can harm it. ”When we have such a God with us, why should we be worried or be scared? Our God is a God who is near us, always walking with us and protecting us. I would like to remind you of what Moses told the Israelites: “For what other great nation, has a God so near to it, as the Lord our God is, whenever we call to him?” (Deuteronomy 4:7). Amidst the uncertainty in the world today and with fear engulfing the people, the Lord reminds us, “For my angel is with you, and he is watching over your lives” (Baruch 6:7).
His Grace is Sufficient
In our weakness and vulnerability, we need to believe in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness. So, I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.” Our faith is put to the test in such circumstances. But Jesus is assuring us that His grace is sufficient for us. We are all serving in a battle in one way or the other. Jesus promises us “I am going to bring it recovery and healing; I will heal them and reveal to them abundance of prosperity and security (Jeremiah: 33.6).” The Lord is writing the history of salvation through each one of us today. We have to become a mighty instrument in His hand. Mother Theresa once said, “I’m just a pencil in the hand of a writing God,” and what a beautiful pencil she was! Today Jesus is calling each one of us to be a pencil in His hand. He wants to write a love letter to the world. So, let us allow ourselves to be His instrument.
On that fateful morning, Mary Magdalene went to tend to Jesus’s mortal remains. Weak as she was, she had accepted the reality as she saw it but was determined to do what she could do to bring dignity and honour to her beloved Master. She was present at the crucifixion on Calvary, and surely there at His burial, and the first to the tomb in the morning, remaining there after both the disciples had left. Mary became an example of the heartfelt and consistent devotion we should all give to Christ; how we should cling to Him and long for His appearing. Her life reminds us that Jesus offers us total deliverance from our past bondages. She was the woman from whom Jesus had driven out seven demons. She was a sinful woman but when the Lord touched her, she became a new creation. Her devotion is unparalleled to any other in the Bible. Her devotion was duly rewarded by the Lord by appearing to her first, after His resurrection. Today she is venerated as a saint in the Catholic Church.
Her example teaches us that we only live once, so we should live it right. Through our strong faith in Jesus, we can lead the whole world to Him. Even during illness, we just need to remember Psalm (41:3), “The Lord sustains them on their sickbed; in their illness you heal all their infirmities.” Every Christian is called to live a disciple’s life regardless of how smart, qualified, talented, beautiful, worthy or sane we are. God does not call the qualified; He equips the called. Just listen to His voice. Jesus is calling your name. He wants to heal, free and redeem us forever. This assurance gives us a purpose in life. If we hold on to Jesus, He will tell us the same thing He told to the sinful woman in Luke (7:50), “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
by Rajni Manoj