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12/07/2021 03:00 - 13/07/2021 02:00

“You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven” - Mathew 5: 14-16 (NIV).

Recently, there was a church in Wakiso district, Uganda, that started giving out food baskets for the vulnerable, spread out on particular days. This is truly a worth development in these perilous times. There are other churches which are doing much the same, without fanfare, standing out as sources of comfort in their communities.

A crisis such as a pandemic can be upsetting to us because of the disruption to our lives. Yet it can also be an opportunity to share our faith in Christ in the community where we are. There is a lot of hurting around us. Aside from those without food for lack of steady income, families are affected in many ways. The stress of uncertainty has certainly got to some and caused separations. In between are children whose studies have been disrupted, are anxious and, much in need of counseling. Then there are the sick with Covid 19 and others ailments. On occasion a number are rushed to hospitals only to be weighed down with suffocating bills.

These are opportunities for the church. They present for us prayer points but also actionable items. Some churches may not be in position to do much in their community because their baskets are empty. After all, the doors have been shut and many people give only by physically attending churches for worship. It therefore means that believers need to double their support of the churches by taking advantage of new payment platforms lie Mobile money. Without resources of course there is little churches can do, leave alone meeting the needs of church workers.

Meanwhile churches also need to quickly reinvent themselves. If a church has been under closure for almost a year as a health crowd control restriction measure, it might as well seek alternative tools to reach its community. There are many churches which are regularly reaching out their communities through virtual multimedia tools, such as broadcasting sermons on yu tube channels or Whatsup video uploads, keeping the fire of virtual prayer chains, without going silent. Through these mediums they can share stories of what God is doing in the lives of many and bring hope.

Yes, of course everyone longs for the day when all church doors are swung wide open, for believers to meet and fellowship just as before, but in the meantime it doesn’t mean the church must go silent. More than anything, this is when the church of Christ proves its relevance.

Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, in the midst of a pandemic as this, in spite of the grief and sorrow around us, yet we thank you for all the opportunities you have birthed around us, to reach our communities and share your love and salvation, this I pray in Jesus’s name.

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    "And your life will be brighter than the noonday; it’s darkness will be like the morning. And you will feel secure, because there is hope; you will look around and take your rest in security”  (Job 11:17-19.)

    Philosophers and writers have long pointed out that without hope mankind would long be gone. The philosopher Victor Frankly who survived the Holocaust where he lost his entire family found hope was the most important weapon that enabled him come out alive. He wrote, “He who has a why to live for can bear almost any how!”
    
Hope can sustain any of us through the darkest of times. This is what happened to Job when he lost everything he possessed. “Though he slay me, I will hope in him; yet I will argue my ways to his face” (Job 13:15).

    King David when he was being pursued by his enemies never lost hope. “For you have been my hope, sovereign Lord, my confidence since my youth” (Psalm 71:5). The Apostle Paul who faced countless perilous times during his missionary journeys including jail and shipwrecks never lost hope. Writing to the Corinthians he reminded them, “He has delivered us from such a deadly peril, and he will deliver us again. On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us, as you help us by your prayers” (2 Cor 1:10-11).

    As believers God has given us hope that our lives are not empty and meaningless, like so many others. He has given us the hope to carry us through the lowest of moments. “I wait for the Lord, my whole being waits, and in His word I put my hope” (Psalm 130:5).
    Today, may that hope that you have in Christ sustain you through whatever circumstances you may be facing.

    Prayer for today: Lord Father God of Abraham, maker of heaven and earth, today I pray in the wonderful name of Jesus that the hope I have in you lifts me up and sustains me in all situations as a conquer, in whose name I pray.

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