Near the beginning of 2020, the world was struck with hardship after hardship, and it is hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Times such as these can make it hard to see what God has in store in the midst of all this misery, but with the help of 2 Chronicles 7:13-15, we can make sense of some current disasters.
“If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people; If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent unto the prayer that is made in this place” (2 Chronicles 7:13-15, KJV).
In this verse, one can start to see the similarities. The fires in Australia, the locust swarms in Africa, and the coronavirus – all of these tragedies could be God sending a sign for the world to turn and repent of sin, similar to the story of Nineveh. Nineveh was a city infamous for its wickedness in the ancient world. Even in the book of Nahum, Nineveh was called or considered “the city of bloodshed” (Nahum 3:1). God was going to destroy the city of Nineveh if the people did not repent of their sins and turn from their wicked ways. This happens to be almost the same warning God gave Sodom before it was destroyed. Thankfully, upon hearing what was to happen in their future if they refused to obey, the people of Nineveh prayed for forgiveness, repented of their sins, and were saved.
Another instance would be the Ten Plagues in Egypt. By not doing as God said, the Egyptians suffered through ten brutal plagues until Pharaoh finally agreed to set the Hebrews free. One of the plagues happened to be swarms of locusts as well. Just by looking through the Bible, one can see how if the people turn back to God, nothing but peace and prosperity will follow.
Answers are hard to find in times like this, but no matter what, God has a plan in the end. No one ever really knows what is going to happen next in this crazy ride we call life, but thankfully God does. As His people, we should do our best to trust in Him and His plan. Remember, what is impossible with man is possible with God (Luke 18:27). The best we can do is show God's love through our words and actions. In other words, be the witnesses we were always meant to be. Most if not everyone is scared of what is to come, so by being encouraging and uplifting, we can help those around us feel some comfort. Yes, these are all terrible events, but believers should not be afraid because of them. 2 Timothy 1:7 states, “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear, but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind”.
The locusts, fires, and illnesses are natural phenomena under the sovereignty of God. The fires in Australia will go out, there will be regrowth after the locust swarms, and we will adapt to the coronavirus. All we need is a little patience, but patience is a virtue that we as a society are still struggling to grasp.