Yes, you’re reading the title correctly. Yes, if you’re reading this, I’m grateful that you’re still alive with everything going on. As another week of our National Lockdown commences, you might be high on snacks but feeling low spiritually. The world is at a virtual standstill that our generation has never witnessed before. Unless you live in Lesotho, the coronavirus (COVID – 19) pandemic has grinded everything to a halt globally except essential services and left us locked up in our homes. From the outset I want to make it exponentially clear we are living in a depressing and anxiety ridden period of world history for many yet I see there to be an opportunity out of all of this.
The Church is facing a fascinating conundrum as religious services weren’t given any preferential treatment by the lockdown’s regulations. Don’t be mistaken this isn’t the first pandemic our world has struggled with however I think as the Church we have never been better placed to reach people.
The current technological age has enabled access to reaching others to be at our fingertips. For centuries the Church has perhaps confined itself so well into a building that many (if not most) of us have convinced ourselves that just like everything else, the Church has stopped. Our attendance at a physical location has stopped but the ‘meeting of the minds’ of God’s followers hasn’t ceased. If anything, this could be seen as a time for revival that many of us sought for years but never had the time.
Never has the Church needed ‘creatives’ more than it does right now. The blessing of being able to spend Sabbath listening to the exact music or sermon that develops and nourishes your relationship to God is how I first came to discover I wanted to follow Jesus. Long before I spent Sabbath’s sitting at a pew, I allowed the Holy Spirit to guide me in finding music that brought me closer to Him and sermons that gave me the answers to many questions that my fledgling faith had. The need for the Church to make use of creatives to enter the social media platform is long overdue. I speak for my own Church who acknowledged its fault in not having an online presence despite almost all its members consuming online media.
The way I see things despite the disaster, is it’s an opportunity for growth. An opportunity for us to reach people from the comfort of their homes because the Lord knows they feel intimidated or ‘sinful’ to ever step foot in a physical church.
One of my favourite preacher’s Ty Gibson recently stated “God repurposes our failures and the violations against us by redeeming them into His plan. God doesn’t initiate those violation. He recycles them.” I love that. God as the great recycler. No thing too large for Him to turn it into an opportunity to grow more, love more and know Him more. “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. – Romans 8:28.
You and I are faced with the opportunity to spread the word electronically in ways that Paul could never have imagined considering he sent many of his letters whilst in prison. So yes, I think I will say it again – what a time to be alive.
By Chilli Nsuela