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March 14, 2020 12:00 pm
Today is the Keep Calm and Carry On edition of Encouraging Prayer. Right now we’re facing the worldwide corona virus pandemic. The silver lining in this cloud is that it can cause us to examine ourselves about eternity, and that’s a good thing, because it can lead us back to God.
Encouraging prayer, God offers open imitation for his people to talk with him at any time about anything encouraging prayer Dr. James Banks, author of the best-selling and many other books on prayer provides weekly biblical insight help you learn to love and valve a is the keep calm area on addition.
Is that right James, that's right you're right in our face and worldwide corona virus pandemic. Even though the numbers are still very low internation even very low is too high in the other day I went to local Cosco notice that all the toilet paper.
It sold out the bottled water was going fast capacity think it's safe to say that there's a fair amount of panic going home after it looks that way.
This is obviously something taken very seriously. But to put things in perspective when the H1N1 pandemic hit 12 years ago, you didn't see anywhere near this kind of reaction and that's interesting because the state of emergency was declared in the country until after a thousand deaths, and there have been only four deaths in our country that we know of as of today, but again that's for too many but yesterday you know we have the largest drop in the stock market since 1987, so there seems to be a pretty significant emotional response going on and that raises this question. How do we pray in a crisis plan for discussing this tests the situation really has presented us for the opportunity to take step back and evaluate our lives and the things that really are most important to us. If that's so true.
Usually we just go along without thinking about our mortality and the silver lining in this cloud is that it can cause us to examine ourselves about eternity and that's such a good thing because it leads us back to God and in one place where you see this kind of thinking again and again in the Bible is in the Psalms of the Psalms are filled with all kinds of cries for help. Seems to me you wrote a book about that. I did you know I wouldn't bring the person the Bible I found so many of those prayers that again our cries for help Christ for protection. There are nearly as many verses there are prayers of praise in Scripture and and so when you're struggling with. How do I pray in a crisis. This Psalms are our great place to go. Think about the way David describes the Lord and in Psalm 28, as is his fast strengthen his shield. He says my heart trusts in him and he helps me and that's really what we need right now. How is it really do believe this stuff are not. That's the truth of it.
We find ourselves singing these things in church, you know, I trust you, Lord, I trust you but then when we come up against something like this. Do we really do we trust that he is the Lord of our lives and this is where I think praying the word of God matters so much. If you look at Psalm 91 that said that's a great one to consider it a time like this whenever I think Psalms of time, I interviewed that Vietnamese pastor could been in the swamp. You know for for five years shorter than in prison camp and you know that's what he.
He said the Lord gave him that Psalm as a way to deal with the fear and when you look at that Psalm from a standpoint of pestilence. I mean how would you like to be in a swamp in Vietnam compared to what we face right.
Let's look at some of this begins whoever dwells in the shelter of the most high will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. And don't we need that rest instead of panic need to just say Lord I trust your rest in you might my life is in your hands. In verse two goes on all say of the Lord he is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust. So there it is again. You know I'm I'm yours I'm yours.
You've got me in all of that in verse three.
Surely he will save you from the fowler's and from the deadly pestilence and then right before we went on the air you were talking about verse four.
He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge, his faithfulness will be your shield and Rampart don't you love that how it's absolutely beautiful and it's such a clear message throughout Scripture about being brought him under his wings I found that just this week to God, pointed me to that passage where Ruth asked Boaz to cover her email with the start of his garment, but that word actually is the same Hebrew word as Wayne and so it was like take me under your wings is a picture of what David would ask. Here are the psalmist asked here at and then later Jesus said all Jerusalem of Jerusalem covered by God and in the result of verse five says you will not fear the terror of night. The arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence start stocks in the darkness nor the plague that destroys at midday a thousand may fall at your side, 10,000 at your right hand, but it will not come. Our lives are in God's hands and this is the thing that that we need to keep in mind constantly and bring before him because he will give us strength and he does watch over us from our perspective as believers is the worst occurs.
How blessed we are weak we get to be with Jesus. And I don't mean that lightly and I that we just times like this, our faith is, is made for times like this and this is an opportunity for us to be able to run through our Savior and also share the hope that we have with others the day as I was driving home I was praying along these lines in all the sudden you know, as I seem kind of desperate is a tremendous sense of humor. He said Robbie I'm back in a state whoops Rob, you asked that we got it. That one slipped by me as this is not that well it looks good for up with the word about all of Shelton police we praise you that you watch over us that you are always faithful that you got this and you got us arrested. You help us to trust you keep every listener say the Lord bless us. We pray that we just cling to you and find you faithful. You always are. In Jesus name, amen. Hear more from Pastor James by visiting the website James Banks.org or by visiting these church in Durham, North Carolina. May God bless you and encourage you as you pray