How to Fight the Coronavirus, Secure Protection, and Care for Others
How to Fight the Coronavirus, Secure Protection, and Care for Others
No.1 Follow Medical Advice for Prevention and Care
Keep in mind that the goal of all the restrictions recommended is to contain this virus and keep it from spreading. Obviously, you should practice the basic precautionary measures you hear like properly washing your hands for 20 seconds (this is a good opportunity to pause and pray), using antibacterial hand sanitizers, and avoid close person to person contact in public—like handshaking, hugging, etc.
It should go without saying but please be considerate of others by being sensitive to personal space and the items you touch. If you have symptoms of any potentially contagious illness please stay home! Friends, relatives, and neighbors are willing to help if you ask. If symptoms are more serious then be sure to get medical help and practice self-containment. Take the preventative measures you hear from trusted medical professionals and the Center for Disease Control and avoid second-hand news and other’s opinions online or in the media.
No.2 Deal With Fear - Your’s and Other’s
While we hear “don’t panic” we also hear things that actually cause people to panic. So you might want to stop or reduce listening to the news, talk radio, reading amateur blogs, and watching movies that only increase the fear that already exists. Instead pay more attention to God’s Word, promises, and to reliable information coming from the CDC for example. The truth is we all tend to get a bit fearful when we live with uncertainty; even more when we feel like we have no control. Remember God has created each of us with a set of emotions that includes fear. This kind of fear warns us to avoid danger for example. In fact, we teach our kids to value this kind of fear in order to help them avoid the things that will harm them. The emotion of fear in and of itself is okay because it’s there for a reason.
Even when fear or other emotions are unrealistic or inconsistent with the truth, they do tell us how we feel. Therefore we can acknowledge and express how we feel and then be sure to submit them to Christ in audible prayer. Then it’s important to verbalize and declare His truth aloud to reorient our feelings and thoughts to God’s Word and promises.
We know we experience feelings of fear and that’s normal. But God has not given us a spirit of fear. In other words, He has not given us the kind of fear that immobilizes us and keeps us from acting according to His will, experiencing His peace, and having the confidence that we can trust Him when our circumstances are uncertain. Instead He’s given us His Spirit of power, love, and a sound mind. His Spirit is the same one that raised Christ from the dead that now lives in us (Romans 8:11). We can use that power to pray and to speak with authoritative commands to forbid evil in its various forms from harming us. According to Psalm 91, this includes diseases and plagues along with various promises of God’s protection. As we use the power He’s given us and rest in the reality of His love and faithfulness to His promises, we can have peace amidst uncertainty (Phil. 4:6)
You can make this practical by “taking your thoughts (and feelings) captive, to make them obedient to Christ” (2 Cor. 10:3-5). For example:
Start by verbally admitting (not confessing or resigning to) your fears. For example, instead of saying “I am afraid,” You can say aloud, “Lord, I feel afraid about . . .”
Then submit your feelings to Jesus: “Jesus, I submit my feelings of fear to your control and in exchange ask you to re-align my feelings with your truth so I can live in your peace and rest in the reality of your faithful love and promises.”
Verbally declare God’s Word and/or those promises that apply to your situation (see No.3 below for the prayer example using Psalm 91) and other promises for God’s protection and provision.
After you state and declare one of God’s truths or promises, use the authority Christ has given you to verbally reject the lie you’ve been affected by, whether it’s your thoughts and/or feelings. For example, “In Jesus’ name, I reject the lie or influence that is causing me to fear being infected with the COVID-19 virus because God has promised to protect me from deadly diseases. Therefore I will not dread the disease or plague that threatens me. I now command any fear that is not from God to leave me now with all its effects in Jesus’ Name.” “In Jesus’ name, I reject the lie and the feelings of fear that I will not be provided for or have what I need to live. I declare that God is faithful to all He promises (2 Cor. 1:20) and He has promised to meet all of my needs according to His riches in Christ Jesus (Phil. 4:19); as I seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness He will provide what I need to live and to carry out His will (Matthew 6:25-34) for He has given me everything I need for life and godliness through my knowledge of Him (2 Peter 1:3).
No.3 Pray Using God’s Promises & Declaring His Word
The following is one example of how you can pray by using God’s Word & promises in prayer for protection. The language of Psalm 91 addresses both physical and spiritual protection and reflects the nature of God’s love and promises for our safety and wellbeing. This is a personalized paraphrase of Psalm 91 you can use either for yourself by using the word “I” in place of “we”; or even more effective by praying in agreement with one or more persons using the word “we” as illustrated below:
Because we live in the shelter of the Most High, we will find our security, peace, and protection in the shadow of the Lord Almighty. This we now declare about the Lord: He alone is our refuge, our place of safety. He is our God, and we trust Him. According to His Word, He will rescue us from every trap and protect us from deadly diseases. He will cover us with His feathers. He will shelter us with His wings. His faithful promises are the armor and protection He has given us. We will not be afraid of the terrors of the night, nor the arrows aimed at us in the day. We will not dread the disease that is stalking around in the darkness, or the disaster that strikes in the middle of the day. Even though a thousand fall near us or ten thousand are dying around us, we declare, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ that these forms of evil will not touch us. Because we make the Most High our shelter, no evil will overcome us and no plague will come near our home. For the Lord has promised to command His angels to protect us wherever we go. They will hold us up with their hands so we won’t even hurt our feet on a rock. Instead, we will defeat this evil and subject it to the feet of Christ. Because the Lord loves us, He will protect us. Because we trust in Him, He promises to answer us when we call on Him, to be with us in trouble, to rescue and honor us, and reward us with a long life and His salvation. Amen!
No.4 Use the Authority Christ Has Given You
Jesus said, “I have given you authority over all the power of the enemy…nothing will harm you” (Luke 10:19).
He tells us we have His authority to speak to “mountains”— a word picture for problems, barriers, threats, as well as the uncontrollable forces of nature, and sickness.
After He cursed the fig tree for not bearing fruit He told His disciples when they noticed it had withered, “Truly I tell you, if you have faith and do not doubt, not only can you do what was done to the fig tree, but also you can say to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and it will be done. If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer” (Mt. 21:21-22).
“He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm” (Mk. 4:35-41). Remember He did not say, “I rebuke you’ to the wind and waves. He gave a direct order, saying what He wanted the wind and waves to do.
Jesus and His followers used authority to speak to all kinds of various diseases; it was the exclusive language they used to heal the sick (see examples in Gospels – Acts)
In teaching us how to pray Jesus tells us to pray in advance for protection from evil e.g., The Lord’s Prayer “deliver us from the evil one” (Mt. 6:13)
You can say something like this aloud, for example: “In Jesus’ name, no threat of harm or sickness will come near our home or family. This virus will pass by us and our loved ones so we will not be affected in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ!”
In agreement speak to the virus itself, “In the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ, we command this virus to be still and to be no more. We say you will not prosper or spread. Be destroyed now by the power of God, in Jesus’ Name.
No.5 Ask for The Holy Spirit’s Counsel
Ask for His leading and help for what and how to pray (Jn. 16:13-15)
Ask for empowerment to heal, protect, and defeat this disease.
Ask for His counsel, wisdom, and revelation on what you can do to prevent this disease, how to be of help to others and how He wants to use you during this time for finding a cure.
No.6 If You or Someone You Know Gets Sick
If you discover that you’re sick, ask someone to pray for your healing while pursuing medical help. Although during this time of social distancing you can’t pray in person, you certainly can pray for others who are sick to be healed or be prayed for by phone or video chat! Never prayed for healing before or perhaps you have but to no avail – see this free guide for the Biblical approach.
Need to be prayed for? Ask someone to use this guide to insure they’re using the language of Jesus and others in the New Testament in their approach. Don’t forget the faith! Believe that God is faithful to heal.
No.7 Pray for Your Nation's Healing
The Lord says, “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land” (2 Chron. 7:14).
You hear this one quoted a lot but how often do we take it seriously? This would be a good time to do what God says. Its message and instructions directly applies to our present situation.
First, God is talking to His people specifically. So yes, that’s us! He’s not asking our leaders or others in the world to humble themselves. He’s asking us to. He’s giving us a condition upon which He promises to act. If we will humble ourselves, repent (admit our sins and turn from them) seek His face and pray, He will affect healing in our land.
To humble yourself – it’s important to understand what it means. To humble oneself means to recognize, acknowledge, or admit to God that we are powerless to bring about change at a personal or national level without God without getting confused about your identity in Christ or your value as His beloved child.
I think the NLT translates it best in Matthew 6:1, “Blessed are those who recognize their need for God.” In other words, humility has to do with acknowledging that we need God and are powerless without Him in the sense we can do nothing fruitful for Him apart from Him. It’s a choice of depending on Him, His truth, strength, and power even when we feel capable and confident. Jesus even said He could do nothing on His own. Later He told His followers that the same is true for us (Jo. 5:19; 15:5). Part of the humility required in this verse is for us to admit that we have sinned. This includes repenting for sins on behalf of our nation. That’s the easier part of repentance. What’s more difficult is to turn from our sin and go in the opposite direction—“turn from their [our] wicked ways.” This is the heart of what it means to repent. And that starts with each of us individually.
In other words, humility has to do with acknowledging that we need God and are powerless without Him in the sense we can do nothing fruitful for Him apart from Him.
In addition to humility and repentance, God says, “if we seek His face and pray” he will bring healing to our land. This is the highest goal of prayer, to know Him and to seek Him. This priority precedes seeking a response from Him in order to receive something in return. He’s interested in a relationship with us and wants us to know Him so we can trust Him more and rest in His unfailing love and all-sufficient power and care.
Throughout the Bible and still today we (myself included) often call out to God for things or ask for His help in crisis. We want him to save us, protect, and help us. For some, whether they’re aware of it or not, this is the only pattern of their prayer life. With this extreme, praying to God is more like a 911 call than a 411 call; prayer offered in emergencies and times of need. When in fact, God is also like the other: there for information and location for the purpose of connecting.
Following the terrorist disaster of 9/11, churches throughout our country were full and people came to pray and seek hope. The 9/11 attack for many brought out their 911 faith in God. And given the situation it was appropriate. But sadly and for most, it didn’t lead to a lasting relationship. It lasted a few months and church attendance once again returned to normal.
This verse calls us beyond emergency prayers to pursue the Lord, “to seek His face” and spend time with Him in prayer, listening to God, meditating on Him and His Words, worshipping and giving thanks. These aren’t exercises or religious duties to perform in hopes of eliciting a response. They are relational opportunities to pursue the Lord personally and on behalf of our nation. It’s a season for both prayer and fasting that calls each of us to be of one heart and purpose.
No.8 Don’t Isolate Yourself!
Finally, while we’re all being advised to practice sheltering-in-place, self-isolation, and social distancing in the physical sense – don’t isolate yourself emotionally and spiritually! If there’s any time to stay connected—care for each other and pray for one another, this is one of them. Especially if you have more free time than usual – take advantage! Now is the time to connect with each other via all the ways technology allows either by phone, email, social media, and/or video chat. We are privileged to have the technology and services to do so, praise God!
Virtual gatherings are now a thing! We can use technology to virtually gather for fellowship with your bible study/small groups/home groups/life groups, initiate and gather with other believers for corporate prayer, and even have virtual family time with loved ones you can’t physically see right now.
September 19, 2019