The pause button – March 22, 2020

“Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.”
Isaiah 45:22 KJV


Military Devotion – March 22, 2020

Devotion based on Isaiah 45:22 KJV

See series: Military Devotions

“Stop the World, I Want to Get Off” is the title of an earlier musical that many can now relate to. A celebrity recently said, “They’re canceling meetings, canceling trips, and canceling sports—maybe we should just cancel 2020.”

Well, 2020 might be canceled. The Lord God just might decide this is the year in which the world will end.

While it is too soon to tell if he will push the STOP button on all earthly life during this year, it certainly seems that he has already pressed the PAUSE button.

We are accustomed to seeing world events stream by with few interruptions. We have been shown a disaster here and a calamity there. But unless we were directly involved, after a brief glance, our attention went back to the flow of events that are part of normal life.

Not this time! A pandemic is not normal.

When we press the pause button on a video, everything stops. We are left to look at the one picture left on the screen. Today, the world’s screen is displaying the face of God to all who would see it.

This new virus has given pause to millions. They are confused. They are worried. What good is a strong economy and a good job if one will soon die? What kind of world are we now living in if American stores are running out of face masks and toilet paper?

Could it be that the health pandemic is causing human panic? It might be.

People are looking to medicine for answers and to governments for help. They are no longer confident they are in control of their lives. They see no answers within, so they conclude deliverance must come from without. Hope must lie somewhere out there!

It does. It always has. Every good thing has always come from the One who dwells in the beyond. No virus rose from the rich soil of Eden. No animal carried disease. The first humans could embrace without risk. They had the Lord God to thank for that.

When human hands brought the sin virus into paradise earth, it spread over the whole planet and on to generations yet unborn.

This virus carried the seed of death. It spawned a host of viruses, including ones now labeled corona.

Humans would have been as doomed and damned as were the rebellious angels if God had not inserted a stop loss into the system. His love would break the downward spiral. His Son would provide the cure. His Spirit would fight further infection. The whole human race would not be lost. Health care for the soul was offered free to all: true universal coverage.

It still is.

The Savior God continues to call out, “Look unto me and be saved, all ends of the earth!”

Before this spreading disaster hit, many of us had been too busy; too independent; and too sure of ourselves to give thought to heaven.

But now, an unseen hand has pushed the pause button. Maybe now we will look up. Maybe now we will take the time to see how little we can control life or prevent death.

Maybe, just maybe, more of us will pause to look more closely at the world’s only hope.

Perhaps more of us will stop our rebelling long enough to see that the Innocent One came from heaven to die here so that we might live forever with him there.

“I am God, and there is none else.” he warns.

We pray that the Lord God will kill the killing virus. He can, of course. He already knows when to allow the warning picture to fade from the big screen. He’s just waiting for the right time.

Until then, he will keep his finger on the pause button—waiting for the world to look to him to be saved.

Prayer: Gracious God, healer of bodies and souls, we pray that you remember us in mercy and soon stay your hand of affliction over this world. Until then, we place ourselves into your loving hands and pray that the threat of death from a virus will cause many to look to you for life from heaven. Amen.

Written by Pastor Paul Ziemer, WELS National Civilian Chaplain and Liaison to the Military, Belle Plaine, Minnesota.

All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV®. Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.™ Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved worldwide. Note: Scripture reading footnotes are clickable only in the web version.

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