“You shall serve the Lord your God, and he will bless your bread and your water, and I will take sickness away from among you.” —Exodus 23:25
Wouldn’t it be nice if there were a “right now” attached to the end of every promise in God’s Word? If we could read a verse like Exodus 23:25 and say, “I will serve God right now, He will bless my bread and water right now, and He will take sickness away from me right now.”
If that were the case, COVID-19 would be gone right now (at least from the lives of those who trust in Him). As God’s children, we know that when it comes to many of His promises, even those that directly apply to us, we live in the tension of “already, but not yet.” His promises are as good as fulfilled. You can take them to the bank. But can you see how they’ve come to fruition? Not necessarily. Not yet.
But while we wait, what can we do? Notice our passage is one part us and two parts God. He is the only One who can bless us. He is the only One who can sustain us. And He is the only One who can eradicate the sickness (physical and spiritual) from our land.
Believer, our job is to serve Him with increasing intensity while we wait for the ultimate fulfillment of His promises. And the way that we do that is to love Him wholeheartedly, to cry out to Him for mercy on behalf of our neighbors, and to share with them the reason for our hope that one day the “not yet” will be before our eyes.
How to Pray
Strengthen me to pray with the conviction
that whatever I receive is thy gift,
so that I may pray until prayer be granted;
Teach me to believe that all degrees of mercy arise
from several degrees of prayer,
that when faith is begun it is imperfect and must grow,
as chapped ground opens wider and wider until rain comes.
So shall I wait thy will, pray for it to be done,
and by thy grace become fully obedient. —The Valley of Vision1
What to pray
- Pray that the Lord would impress upon your heart a need to serve Him during these days—not just a desire to serve, but a need.
- Cry out for God’s mercy to fall like rain upon your home, your church, your neighborhood, and your nation.
- Pray that the virus would be eradicated, that lives would be saved, and that as a result of these difficult hours, His Church would be purified and many would come to repentance and faith.
1 “The Divine Will,” The Valley of Vision (Banner of Truth), accessed September 9, 2020, https://banneroftruth.org/us/devotional/the-divine-will/.