Sometimes, Things Get Worse Before They Get Better
We are living in difficult times. We are living in scary times. Many people are afraid of the coronavirus / COVID-19 pandemic and rightly so. We are fighting against an invisible enemy and it seems the enemy is winning. However, for Christians, our faith still remains in the Almighty God, the Creator of heaven and earth, and His only begotten Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The Cross and the Blood of Jesus are powerful healing balms.
In Chapter 9 of the Gospel of Mark, a man brought his son, who was possessed by an evil spirit, to Jesus for healing, but Jesus was not around and the disciples could not heal the boy. Jesus had taken three of the disciples - Peter, James, and John - to the top of a high mountain where he was transfigured.
When Jesus returned and joined the other disciples, he met the man who explained that the evil spirit had robbed the son of his speech and it often seized him and threw him to the ground; he also foamed at the mouth and was rigid. The man was disappointed that the disciples could not heal the boy, and Jesus was unhappy about the disciples’ unbelief which may have contributed to their inability to heal the boy.
Jesus asked for the boy to be brought to him and they did. This was when it got worse before it got better. As soon as the spirit saw Jesus, it immediately threw the boy into convulsion and the boy fell to the ground, rolled around, and foamed at the mouth. Note that the evil spirit did not react violently when the boy was with the disciples, but did so in the presence of Jesus, the only person who could heal the boy. Apparently, the devil and the evil spirit were not going to give up without a fight. Jesus commanded the evil spirit to come out of the boy and it did.
Sometimes, things get worse before they get better. For a moment after Jesus arrived, it appeared the devil and the evil spirit had won. If Jesus had not demonstrated courage, faith and power, the devil and the evil spirit could have actually won the day. How many of us give up just when things are about to get better? Even though we are facing extreme difficulties which have shaken the faith of many people, we should not give up because, in Christ Jesus, we shall overcome. As the Apostle John said, “this is the victory that has overcome the world, even our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world? Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.” (1 John 5:4-5 NIV).
Like soldiers on the battle front, let’s exercise courage and faith and fight against this common enemy called coronavirus. One powerful weapon we have is prayer. When the disciples asked Jesus privately why they could not cast out the evil spirit, ““He replied, “this kind can come out only by prayer.”” (Mark 9:29 NIV). Other Bible translations say by prayer and fasting.
Similarly, coronavirus appears to be the kind which can come out only by prayer or prayer and fasting. And so let’s pray for all those who have been infected by coronavirus so that God will destroy the virus and heal them. Let’s pray for all those who have not been infected by coronavirus so that God will protect them from infection. Let’s pray especially for all health care workers and all those who are the front-line soldiers in this battle for God to give them courage to fight coronavirus, for protection against infection, and for faith to believe that victory will be achieved. Let’s pray for scientists, researchers and all who are working tirelessly to find vaccines and other medicines for coronavirus that God will plant good ideas in their minds and guide them to achieve their goals.
In addition, let’s pray for our leaders everywhere so that God will guide them to make the right decisions for the good of everyone. Finally, let’s pray for ourselves and others that God will give all of us the will and desire to practice basic hygiene and follow necessary precautions to avoid coronavirus infection.
And when we pray, we should believe that God will answer our prayers. When Jesus told the boy’s father that “everything is possible for him who believes,” the man exclaimed that he believed, and asked Jesus to help him overcome his unbelief. (Mark 9:23-24 NIV). Unfortunately, some people do not believe that prayer can help in the fight against coronavirus. They believe that it is all about science. Well, it is about science and more. Like the man, may God help all of us to overcome our unbelief and grant our prayers to get rid of coronavirus, even if things may seem to get worse before they get better.
Prayer is the key. May God grant us the grace to seek Him daily through our prayers.
Dr. Daniel Gyebi, Attorney-at-Law, Texas, U.S.A., and Founder, PrayerHouse Ministry, Kumasi, Ghana.
PrayerHouse Ministry is dedicated to providing a quiet facility for Christians to pray individually by themselves without any intermediary priest, pastor or any other person. This is a free service. No money is demanded or accepted. One facility is located at Kyerekrom / Fumesua, near Building and Road Research Institute Offices, one mile off the Kumasi-Accra Road and next to a house called Grace Castle. If you are interested, please contact Agnes at 054-7498653. Another is located at Kantinkyiren, at the junction of Kantinkyiren and Konkori, off the Kumasi-Obuasi Road, branching left at Trede junction. Contact Kwadwo at 020-8768461 / 0246-989413.
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