“Blessed is the man whose strength is in You, whose heart is set on pilgrimage.” (Ps 84:5)
Have you ever felt like your life is shattered by the unpredictable trouble and fear in recent years from the global pandemic, inflation boom, growing violence, and numerous natural disasters? It is hard to feel secure about our life and surroundings. The world is full of uncertainty, afflictions, and tears. Yet, we all need to face and pass through our journey of life to make the pilgrimage.
Then Jesus answered and said to her, “O woman, great is your faith! Let it be to you as you desire.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour. —Matthew 15:28
The manifestation of miracles is related to the faith of the seeker. The miracle of healing the Gentile woman’s demon-possessed daughter is one example. The Canaanite woman, who humbled herself to beg for mercy despite the Lord’s harsh words, demonstrated not only her great faith but also persistence in seeking God’s mercy and grace.
“Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, ‘Peace, be still!’ And the wind ceased and there was a great calm.” (Mark 4:39)
“And a great windstorm arose” (4:37), a storm so threatening that the disciples asked their sleeping Master if He did not care that they perished. Some of life’s storms come upon us suddenly. These storms could be job loss, family illness or death, financial difficulties, accidents, or a pandemic. In the midst of a storm, we are often scared and cry out to God and pray earnestly. If God does not give any apparent response or delays His help, we may wonder does Jesus care? With great fear, the disciples woke Jesus up and said to Him, “Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?” (4:38) In our distress, we sometimes may ask a similar question, “Lord, do You not care my grief and my difficulty? I need Your help now.”
And behold, a leper came and worshiped Him, saying, “Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean.” Then Jesus put out His hand and touched him, saying, “I am willing; be cleansed.” Immediately his leprosy was cleansed. (Matthew 8:2-3)
Amidst the pandemic, quarantine or lockdown is often imposed to contain the spread of Covid-19. During my recent trip to Taiwan, I was confined in a quarantine hotel room alone for 15 days upon arrival. Afterwards, I stopped by a dental office to make an appointment, but I was told to leave right away when they learned that I was still in my 7-day self-health monitoring period after my 14-day quarantine. The feelings of isolation and humiliation were in full at this incident when I was treated fearfully as a possible contagious disease carrier from abroad.
“The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “Therefore I hope in Him!” The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, To the soul who seeks Him. It is good that one should hope and wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. (Lam 3:24-26)
Being a child of God is blissful. We are blessed, protected, and guided by Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit. Yet we may encounter difficulties and sickness throughout our journey of life. As every morning is new, God’s grace is abundant. We still have hope when we are in distress. Facing the pressures and difficulties of life, why not try to seek peace and rest from prayers, adjust our emotions, relax oneself, and find the strength to start again.