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The Pandemic Prayer by Lisa Burkhardt Worley

Image by cromaconceptovisual from Pixabay

As coronavirus cases continue to surge across the globe, the state of our world can leave us feeling helpless. But that’s why we need to step up our prayers like never before. James 5:16 says, “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” So if we believe the Bible, we have to believe that our intercession make a difference. We can win this battle through prayer.

This week, the Holy Spirit gave me a three-fold prayer that we can lift up every day. It’s easy to remember because everything starts with the letter “S.”

Pray for Strength- Isaiah 40:29 says in the New Living Translation that God “gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless.” Then in Isaiah 41:10 the LORD encourages us again, “Don’t be afraid; for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand.” Many of us might think we’re strong, but when we get broadsided by life, with the undercurrent stress of COVID-19 already present, whatever additionally attacks us can take us down. We have to have God’s strength already running through our veins. In 2 Corinthians 12:9–10 the Apostle Paul said that in the midst of the insults, distresses, persecutions and the difficulties he endured, when he was weak, Christ made him strong.

Pray for StrategyDespite this dramatic change in the way we function, let’s ask God for a strategy to come through what’s going on, so we’ll still be standing when it ends. Our ministry has changed the way we do just about everything, and because I’ve asked the Lord for His strategy, he has also shifted my personal life in many ways, which includes a move into an additional area of expertise that will require more schooling. I would not have chosen this if I was living according to my plan, but I surrendered my plans to God. Proverbs 19:21 says, “Many are the plans in a man’s heart but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.” Isaiah 55:8–9 tells us that God may have a plan for our lives that is not even on our radar. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord.

Listen in the SilenceThis is when we ask, “What do you want to say to me during this Pandemic, Lord? What should I learn?” In Luke 5:16, it says that Jesus would often withdraw to desolate places to pray. He removed the noise so He could hear His Father’s voice more clearly. How do we hear God’s voice in the silence? It could be in the form of an impression on your spirit. It may be a gentle whisper of the Holy Spirit,, or possibly an audible whisper like the one that the prophet Elijah heard at Mt. Carmel (1 Kings 19:11–13). Try it! God still speaks today.

Ultimately, by praying and leaving this Pandemic in God’s hands, we tell Him that we trust Him—no matter what happens. When everything around us seems like it is crumbling, He provides an inexplicable stable foundation. Prayer is the answer to surviving the Pandemic.

And those who know your name put their trust in you, for you, O LORD, have not forsaken those who seek you (Psalm 9:10).

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Don’t miss our next POP Chat, this Wednesday, July 29th on ZOOM at 6:30 p.m.. Dr. Lynnette Simm will be teaching about “How to Find Your Peace” and Renee Rollins will lead our worship for this beautiful one-hour of fellowship. Here’s the link to sign up: https://share.hsforms.com/15bHBupdrTBugXxD9Y8Q_MQ3jo4z

Categories: Blog

S.O.S. by Lisa Burkhardt Worley

Do you feel like sending out a distress signal right now? Need a life raft?

The universal distress signal is S.O.S. It is Morse Code and not an acronym, but everyone knows what it means. Over the years, however, some people have turned it into an acronym: “SAVE OUR SHIP,” so if that’s the case, what is on your ship that you feel needs saving right now?

Your finances?

Your family?

Your health?

As we think about what needs saving, I want to offer some other acronyms for S.O.S.

SINK OR SWIM. In light of COVID-19, sometimes we feel like the world is sinking. Over the Memorial Day Weekend, I am here at my usual happy place, South Padre Island, but this time it’s a little unsettling walking around in a “masked” environment. I have to make a choice: Will I allow myself to sink emotionally because it’s different or will I choose to have a good time and swim? Swimming is always the better choice but it takes more effort.

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Over the past few months, our ministry, Pearls of Promise, has been forced to cancel a Level-Up Conference, speaking engagements came to a halt, because of the “Shelter-at-Home” order, we could not gather as a team for our new television show, POP Talk. We also couldn’t do in-person radio interviews, and we felt like we were not teaching/encouraging our Pearls of Promise connections anymore. What to do? We had to make a choice. Sink Or Swim?

SEEK OUR STRATEGY. We chose to swim so this led to seeking a strategy and ultimately, the strategy or chess moves for our lives must come from God. Proverbs 19:21 says, “Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails.”

As the leader of this ministry, I overcame the initial shock of the hard stop brought on by COVID-19 by spending extended time in God’s presence. It was like I was a little child again, wearing holy floaties. How and where do you want us to swim, Lord? Do we simply float, or do you want us to keep moving forward in some way? And He was faithful to provide the strategy, just as He will provide a detailed plan for you in your life.

SEASON OF SLEEP. This is an acronym that we might not have thought about. Maybe the Lord is taking some things off your plate so you can relax, recharge and bask in His presence. Even though Pearls of Promise is still busy doing ministry, my days are still less hectic and contain more margin than ever before. The pace feels better and allows for a longer quiet time in the morning.

SEEK OUR SAVIOR. Jesus does not want us to sink. He wants us to work things out with Him at the center, and then desires for us to walk on the water, holding His hand so we don’t go under. He is the foundation in the midst of continued uncertainty.

I will close with one of my favorite passages from Psalm 40:1-2:

“I waited patiently for the LORD; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.”

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SERVING OUR SAVIOR! Here’s the link to sign up for our POP Chat for this Wednesday, May 27 at 6:30 p.m. We hope you will sign up and join us for a powerful time online.

https://share.hsforms.com/15bHBupdrTBugXxD9Y8Q_MQ3jo4z?utm_source=hs_email&utm_medium=email&_hsenc=p2ANqtz-_Fd6oIw25om50GBkR6HgrBG0x2wbHRc-I-hrq_UD9pFk8BXeRStNn8q9sf_egb5difzFL6

Categories: Blog