Pastoral Pessimism in a Pandemic: Pastoring During COVID-19

Click Here to read Faithful, Consistent, Pastoral Communication: It’s More Important Now Than Ever


 

Chances are you are reading this because you’re not feeling excellent about the current COVID-19 pandemic and how it affects you, your church, and your family. You’re probably looking at the curves, graphs, and predictions and feeling even worse. If there was ever a compelling reason to side with Eeyore, this is it.

You’re probably not going to be excited when you find out an optimist happens to be writing a piece like this, but maybe that’s what it takes to help you out right now. Just so you know, I also have seen the graphs, predictions, scenarios and all that jazz. I’m not overlooking the reality, I’m looking over the reality and I see a brighter day coming. Stick with me for three quick points to help you see a brighter day also.

 

Fight the Voices

There are more talking heads, content, and information being poured into your mind at this time than ever before in history. You need to take hold of the streams of information and wrestle them like a crocodile until there is calm.

Fight the voices by choking out all that doesn’t help, and tune into voices that do. The primary voice being the Holy Spirit. When we listen to the still small voice of God just as Elijah did after the chaos of the prophets of Baal had died (1 Kings 19:12-15), we will be both comforted and instructed.

 

Fight for Faith

It’s in the place where we are present to the voice of God in our souls that the true fight begins. Pessimism is real, it’s not just a simple thing to “get over”. It’s got a grip on us and can keep us bound as it plummets our hearts and minds, like a fireball into the depths of the sea.

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. – Hebrews 11:1

You might not be able to see the coming brighter day, you might not be able to see purpose in the pain, you might not be able to even hope right now, but fight for faith. Listen to the Holy Spirit, what is he telling you, what is he illuminating in the Word of God to you? Look to Jesus the one who conquered death and rules over it, does he inspire faith?

 

Fight with Confidence

Jesus’ powerful resurrection can fill even the most pessimistic heart with confidence. If Jesus lives then not only is there the sure assurance of a coming brighter day, but there is great purpose in our current situation. Every moment is an opportunity to encourage, invite, and share the hope of Christ with those who don’t know him. Surely, the truly pessimistic should be those without Christ and the unbreakable promise of life eternal in him.

Pastor, if you are feeling pessimistic this moment, look to Jesus. He is our coming brighter day and our hope in the darkness of our current pandemic.

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