Previously in this series
In the last post, I dwelt essentially on the things I will focus upon and do in order to maximize the lockdown. Things which I believe are positive action points if the Enemy of my soul will not gloat over my Lord on account of my life.
But then, life is always a coin. Life is always of double sides. As there are things to consciously aim at and do, there are things to deliberately watch out for so as NOT to do. And the biggest and most potent thing to avoid so as not to jettison the entirety of Gods program for this hour of darkness is again something of the mind . . . FEAR!
I SHALL NOT FEAR OR PANIC!
As a husband and father, I knew it was my responsibility to help my family determine how to handle the crisis around this coronavirus outbreak. Two things were paramount at such a time as these. We must find hope in this hopeless situation and we must have clearcut instructions on how to behave.
So God brought hope and comfort from a curious phrase in Psalm 91 which has calmed our hearts; and I do pray will calm yours too.
3 Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler,Psalm 91:3 (KJV)
and from the noisome pestilence.
This Corona Virus crisis is a noisome pestilence.
The noise and panic created around the virus is by far more deadly than the real threat of the virus itself. And we must not allow the fear to overwhelm our hearts. It is a pestilence no doubt, but it is more noise than real threat to my own life and future. We must be careful not to go into panic mode because of fear!
The last time the world experienced a pestilence of these proportion was almost a century (100 years) ago; and believe me, many people died but it did not wipe out the entire earth of its population. The Earth survived. The earth continued. People returned to normal life after the crisis; even though they actually returned to “a new normal”.
Therefore, a pestilence or plague ravaging the earth does not mean I must die with it. The truth is that many many more people will not die. And you can kill yourself by fear, even though you were not actually meant to die by this pestilence. You can die from the noise and not from the virus itself.
It is a statistical fact in all over the world already, that otherwise healthy people are beginning to develop symptoms of ill-health just for fear of the Corona noise that has filled our Media.
People who had other ailments and medications have been capable of managing them are suddenly giving up and dying cheaply from fear and unconnected with the virus. Death rates have been fuelled all over the world because of fear.
25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;Luke 21:25-26 (KJV)
26 Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.
Unfortunately, world bodies and national leaders have thought that the way to manage and curtail the spread of this virus is by creating world-wide fear. Maybe they are right in a sense, because careless individuals may not obey simple instructions unless they are first paralyzed by fear. That’s the reason why some churches and ministries are also built on fear.
But for me, I shall not fear, though the mountains be moved and cast into the sea. Like the songwriter said, I’m no longer a slave to fear
1 God is our refuge and strength,Psalms 46:1-5 (KJV)
a very present help in trouble.
2 Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed,
and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;
3 Though the waters thereof roar and be troubled,
though the mountains shake with the swelling thereof. Selah.
4 There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God,
the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High.
5 God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved:
God shall help her, and that right early.
Meanwhile, I see less reason to fear this virus that has been declared a world-wide-global crisis. Malaria is killing more people yearly than COVID-19 has claimed or would ever claim when it’s over. (By the grace of God).
Some quick facts which you can google and confirm . . .
**** COVID-19 is not as deadly as Ebola or even the SARS Flu. The death rate is a meagre 3-5% world wide compared with Ebola that had a death rate of between 50 and 88%. The big threat is in its spread, not its deadliness.
Several people have treated themselves at home and survived the COVID-19 infection. Nobody dared this during the Ebola crisis. Ebola was an almost certain death sentence, COVID-19 is not. The viral load has been successfully brought down with hot water/steam inhalation therapy, with nature’s free provision like lemon, onions, garlic etc.
**** Meanwhile, of recent, the USA COVID-19 coordination effort has come out to confirm that the virus dies at high temperatures especially under the Sun’s rich UV rays that are abundant in Africa. The “half-life” of the virus goes from 18hours to about 2mins at 70-75°F (21-24°C) and 80% humidity under Sunlight. These temperatures that America considers “high” are still “cold days” in Africa where temperatures can go up to as high as 40°C.
**** As at April 28, 2020, of the 1,955,220 currently infected worldwide, 1,898,839 (97%) have only a “mild condition” and will likely recover while only 56,381 (3%) are in “serious or critical condition”.
**** Most of those who didn’t survive have “underlying conditions” i.e. other serious ailments like Diabetes, Asthma, High Blood Pressure etc. Those whose immune system are still vibrant, will most likely still survive. And as at date, nearly a million people have survived and fully recovered.
**** Even though every single death is painful and costly especially if they do not go to heaven, yet according to statistics, (just google “world malaria deaths) an average of over 400,000 people died from Malaria alone in each of the years 2017, 2018 & 2019 worldwide, with over 90% in Africa. Of these over 153,000 (38%) are from Nigeria alone.
**** And up till now, there just A meagre 40 deaths in Nigeria from COVID-19. It’s interesting that WHO has not declared a pandemic worldwide for Malaria deaths, probably because the deaths are black and mainly African.
So you see, If we should be afraid especially in Nigeria, we should fear Malaria more than COVID-19. However, what makes this Corona virus a threat is its rate and mode of infection! It does not need a mosquito to spread; it can spread simply by contact from human to surfaces to human. And this is why we should observe the precautions of Hand-washing, Social distancing and immediate quarantine of suspected cases . . . to stop its further spread. Yet, the postulation of one person being able to infect 100,000 people in one week HAS NOT HAPPENED IN NIGERIA despite all our hugging and shaking and crowding.
It is a pestilence no doubt, but it is more noisome than it really is. There’s more noise than harm in this COVID-19 epidemic. Therefore, in the family altar to which I referred, God warned us very strictly not to join in magnifying the crisis beyond what it really is. He said,
11 For the LORD spake thus to me with a strong hand,Isaiah 8:11-14 (KJV)
and instructed me that I should not walk in the way of this people, saying,
12 Say ye not, A confederacy,
to all them to whom this people shall say, A confederacy;
neither fear ye their fear, nor be afraid.
13 Sanctify the LORD of hosts himself;
and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread.
14 And he shall be for a sanctuary;
but for a stone of stumbling and for a rock of offence
to both the houses of Israel,
for a gin and for a snare to the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
So, I have refused to call this a “Pandemic” . . . “a disease outbreak of panic proportions” (definition mine). I shall not call it what the people have called it; neither shall I fear their fear! I will sanctify the Lord and let HIM be my fear. I will not panic or be overcome with fear. This that has come will surely pass away.
It is a pestilence, no doubt but a merely noisesome pestilence. And I shall fear no evil because His rod and His staff, shall comfort me!
And God has promised to be a sanctuary to us, if we obey. No plague (COVID-19) will come near our dwelling place because Baba Himself will be our dwelling place (Sanctuary). The sinner and unbeliever has every reason to give in to panic and fear, the child of God does not. Increase your fear of the Lord, so that your faith in Him can soar, you will soon know the experience of being “far above” all the pestilence that walkers at noon day..
9 Because thou hast made the LORD, which is my refuge,Psalms 91:9-14 (KJV)
even the most High, thy habitation;
10 There shall no evil befall thee,
neither shall any plague come nigh thy dwelling.
11 For he shall give his angels charge over thee,
to keep thee in all thy ways.
12 They shall bear thee up in their hands,
lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.
13 Thou shalt tread upon the lion and adder:
the young lion and the dragon shalt thou trample under feet.
14 Because he hath set his love upon me, therefore will I deliver him: I will set him on high, because he hath known my name.
If you have endured to read this far, I suspect that you would have been blessed one way or the other. Fear would have receded in your heart as you saw that even by statistics, this is more noise than effect. Moreover, Faith would have risen in your heart as you opened your heart to the word of God and heard God’s assurances and promises to deliver you.
Therefore, I wish you will rise, first in your spirit and denounce COVID-19 in your life, your family and in your experience. Declare that you will only hear it in statistics, it shall never come near you, your family or your dwelling place. And the God of heaven, He shall hear; and He shall fulfil His promises in your life in Jesus Name. Amen.