- This situation is forcing me to consider some of my idols. I really enjoy sports. I pay attention to ESPN. I love baseball and football. My college team, the University of Louisville, was doing well in basketball. I seldom watch golf except for the Masters. At least for the foreseeable future, these sports are gone. How much I miss them will tell me something about who I am.
- My belief in the sovereignty of God is being tested. My heart beats for missions and the nations, and I always look forward to training nationals around the world. Pam and I were scheduled to travel to Eastern Europe next week to teach, but that trip has been necessarily cancelled. How frustrated I get will tell me how much I really trust the Lord’s control of world events.
- This situation is reminding me that I can be kind of stupid. The Great Commission urgency and the wrongly-assumed invincibility with which I live can make me reckless at times. It’s a good thing I have my wife to remind me to avoid big crowds, wash my hands, get sufficient rest, etc.
- I suspect the next few weeks will reveal just how much a workaholic I am. My seminary, Southeastern Seminary, is joining hundreds of other institutions in moving all instruction to on-line beginning next week. Without students on campus, my daily schedule will change dramatically. In addition, churches where I was scheduled to preach are canceling services. We’ll see how well I adjust to having some downtime.
- I’m realizing how little I pray for the world’s leaders, despite my work for a mission agency. My work requires me to stay in touch with my team around the world, but I’m now seeing that I don’t pray enough for those who lead the rest of the world. Few places around the globe are evading the threat of this virus.
- The needs of the world in this crisis have again caused me to consider my own calling to the mission field. Someday, I trust, God will allow Pam and me to (a) help train believers and (b) shepherd, encourage, and love missionary personnel around the world. This situation has painfully reminded me that people die every day without ever hearing about Jesus.
- I pray that believers in North America better appreciate our weekly gatherings after we’ve chosen not to meet during this crisis. Our brothers and sisters around the world better understand the value of meeting—often because they risk their lives every time they meet. Their gatherings are genuinely times of rejoicing, thanksgiving, and encouragement. Perhaps we’ll miss gathering together and will more greatly appreciate our own opportunities to worship as a congregation.
- Today, I’m grateful for the opportunity to educate via electronic means. I understand that many older professors (and I’m one of them) struggle with teaching online courses. I love online teaching, though, and I’m convinced it can be just as effective as in-person teaching if we do it well. In days like these, I’m deeply thankful that we can continue to train folks around the world even when we’re not gathering in our classrooms.
- I’m looking forward to the return of Jesus. I long for my friends, loved ones, and the nations to know Him first–but I sure will be glad when the agonies of this sin-influenced world are past.
Thanks for letting me share my thoughts. I pray that all of us will remain healthy.