COVID-19 has been in effect for over a month now, and it hasn’t been easy on any of us, I’m sure. I can’t speak for everyone, but my experience has been harrowing for a variety of reasons. It’s natural to feel angry, sad, and fearful. I feel it. However, there was one thing that has helped me through this stressful time above all others: faith. When I say that my faith has seen me through I don’t mean any single verse or conglomerate of verses, but the reminder of the core of my faith: God loves every person in the world and He has a plan.
Think of all the terrible things that have happened throughout human history, and consider that we’re still here. The Black Death? We’re still here. Famines? We’re still here. The Great Depression? We’re still here. Not only is the human race still alive, but we’re thriving. I don’t believe that we could be where we are today without God’s plan. No matter how much pain someone is going through, large or small, one or many, something good will come out on the other end. That ‘something good’ will inevitably stick with us for a long time to come or lead us to more advancement in many ways, whether it’s technologically, spiritually, relational, skill-wise, or any other number of ways. So, believe me when I say that God has a purpose in all of this.
Being a storywriter has given me some perspective that has helped me in my faith journey. Everything terrible that happens to the characters in a good story has a purpose and affects the people around them. So many minor things can snowball into huge changes in our lives, and even when someone beloved dies or someone horrible enters your life, it’s really just the fire to refine the gold that God has meant for you to become.
For the pedantic contrarian nitpicking this post just because they think it’s edgy and funny (you know who you are), let me be clear that I have considered how free will factors into this, and I do believe we have that freedom of choice. My experiences have led me to believe that God works in subtle ways. The right gust of wind, a pebble in the road, a specific pop-up on a webpage, or anything so subtle that it affects us without us knowing can incite an action or idea that leads to a domino effect that only God can truly see the end of. Plus, if we were all mindless puppets without free will, then why did I feel the need to address you, contrarian nitpicker?
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29: 11-13 NIV)
When everything is said, and all the feelings are felt, we’re still here. I genuinely believe that everything out of our control is part of God’s plan, and that even if it doesn’t seem like it benefits us now, it will benefit someone in the long-run. That will cause a chain reaction that leads us to a better day. Things are going to get worse before they get better, but I can promise that they will get better and eventually lead us to the next phase of God’s plan.