When encouraging people to be generous in their giving back to God today, the response may be something like, “Have you lost your mind? Do you not have the internet, a radio or a television set? These are super-hard times, friend.”

Yes, times are hard, unprecedented. I have not seen anything like it ever. I have heard the stories of those who endured the dark days of the Great Depression and WWII but not in a million years would I have thought such days would again populate the calendar, but here they are. Just like it was for residents of the 1930s and ‘40s. The economy is in peril. People are losing their jobs, their savings. Anxiety levels are through the roof. Yes, both you and I are caught in the vise and are feeling the pressure as COVID–19 appears to tighten her grip more and more every day.

Thinking biblically, is it possible that the apostle Paul may have had a time like today in mind when he wrote Timothy saying:

…in the last days perilous times shall come.
— 2 Timothy 3:1 KJV

Perhaps so, but I am not looking to scripture today as a prophet of doom, but for hope. And what I find is the same guy who warned of perilous times such as these also said:

And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.
— Philippians 4:19 ESV

What that tells me is this: Regardless of how tight the grip COVID–19 has on the world today, the promises of scripture are sure, and God’s grip on his children is secure. I love what the psalmist had to say about perilous times, and you will too.

I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread.
— Psalm 37:25 ESV

Doesn’t that verse brim with hope? Do you not feel a reassuring sense of peace and calm as you read David’s words? I do. Yes, the days are indeed perilous and may well be a precursor to our Lord’s promised and imminent return, and that’s okay. For, in Jesus, God has built an ark of safety and all are invited to come aboard and take refuge in him.

Friends, in this hour, the thing needed most is for every believer to be strengthened in their faith and thoroughly equipped to get the word out to others before the door is shut and the ark sets sail. So right now, the church needs the faithful to be faithful as never before. The fact that people are hurting, socially isolated, losing their jobs, their savings, and so very much more is all the more reason for you and I to give generously that the church might continue to be the church, fulfilling its mission to alleviate suffering throughout the world. It’s what we do here at c|Life.