Tigers, Hornets, and COVID…Oh My!

How I still see God, even in the chaos.

 

Overwhelmed, I walked out the door and sat on the front step. I never just go sit on the front step. I needed some fresh air and a new view. New realities were crushing my mind and processing them was resulting in a complete neural lock-down. Then I saw it. As it fluttered through the air, its beautiful red form caught my eye as it alighted on a branch. It began to chirp, or more likely, I gradually began to take notice. My wife and my mom have been bird watchers for years and while I always thought it momentarily interesting, it has never been a huge interest of mine.

While I sat there trying to process the stress, my heart filled with fear, I came to realize that birds had no thought of Covid-19. He had no idea of the changes the virus had brought to humanity, not a single “2020 fear” had gripped its heart. I began to realize my heart needed the birds. My heart needed them because God was going to use them to remind me of who He is.

He is Sovereign; God is in control. You see friend, the birds were not afraid because to them Covid-19 was not in control. But me, I was afraid because I was living as if Covid-19 was in control. I had allowed my fear to begin to control me instead of allowing the Holy Spirit to control me. God used the birds to remind me that He had not surrendered His throne to a virus, country, ruler, political system, or a medical diagnosis. He is still on the throne.

For the cardinal in my dogwood tree, nothing had changed. The squirrel my daughter has named Chester climbing the poplar tree, life was the same for him too. The chipmunk that burrowed a tunnel right at the corner where our driveway met our sidewalk hadn’t known 2020 to be a year of turmoil and chaos either. The blue-tailed skink, he was clueless as to Covid-19 as well.

The God who holds all things together, is still holding all things together. The earth has been groaning under the pains of sin since the first sin in Genesis 3 when mankind chose himself over God. The agonies of 2020 are a continuation of the pain of sin and a deep reminder of man’s need for the Savior Jesus Christ. In my lifetime I’ve never experienced chaos like this year, but that doesn’t mean that sin hasn’t been destroying life since the garden. I needed a bigger mental box for the reality of the pain sin brings. I also needed an even bigger view of God, who cannot be contained in a box: the Sovereign Conqueror over sin and pain forever. The year 2020 must drive me toward the Conqueror of chaos, not away from Him.

God is still seen through the chaos. God is Redeemer. He turns sinners into the saved. He takes the bad and turns them into good. He vanquishes the evil and replaces it with the holy. God rescues the sinking and places them on solid ground. He takes the hardships of this fallen world and–somehow, through His infinite wisdom and redemptive power–utilizes them to purify His people. He took the blind man and made him see, the lame and made him walk, the outcast and made her wanted, the socially excluded and made them brothers and sisters, the leper and made him clean and accepted. He takes wicked sinners like me and calls them His children. In this I have confidence: this same God can take 2020 with all its chaos and pain, enact His redemptive power, and through it weave redemptive stories for His glory in 2021.

May I suggest putting the tech down and going outside and watching God’s creation for a bit? Admire the birds, and listen to their songs. Be in awe of how they glide through the air and instantly stop perched on a tiny branch as it bristles in the wind. Let them remind you that God is still on His throne.

Adam Read
Director of Digital Technology
Positive Alternative Radio

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