Dale Jenkins and his brother, Jeff, are sons of the former Jerry Jenkins of Birmingham, AL. Being a preacher’s son, and, becoming preachers themselves, they post articles, prayers and encouragement to encourage preachers each week.
I have read many of their articles for some years and appreciate all of them.
They recently asked some preachers to opine concerning good things that have possibly come to the church due to this pandemic. Here is the list below, with my comments in italics. Think on these . . . .
SOME GOOD THINGS THAT HAVE COME FROM THIS PANDEMIC
- 1.There is probably more preaching to non-believers than ever before. Humans sometimes wait to think about eternity until a crisis happens in their lives, such as the death of a loved one or a medical diagnosis that is very serious. We should teach the gospel always but consider how important it is that we capitalize on these events while people are so receptive. Matthew 28:29-20, Mark 16:15-16
- 2.It has caused more people to be open to Bible study. Many are looking for good news and are wondering of God is in control. He is, and the good news is still there! We must remember that.
- 3.The pandemic has pushed us to online giving – that will have a positive effect long after. Indeed, because we couldn’t meet at the building, many members of the church want to make sure that God continued to receive his portion. What a great attitude! And “online giving” has increased as a result. THANK YOU!
- 4.It appears to have united us – more have attended other’s services and caused us to understand that the most important things in lives are not things, but relationships. The church is built on relationships; it starts with our relationship with God and then with his people; We are all one in Christ and brothers and sisters. We must be united in Christ! Division has hurt us in the church, and Satan is still trying to divide his people. Churches of Christ should not be in competition with one another – we should do what we can to encourage all churches to do what needs to be done in sharing the gospel, helping those in need . . .
- 5.A loss of control has led to periods of contemplations about Jesus. How much are we in control of things in this life? The illusion of control causes us to always look to ourselves, not God.
- 6.The chance to spend more time with family – how important is family? The Bible is clear as to the importance of the family. Paul gives instructions to husbands and wives and how they should treat one another in Ephesians 5:22-33. The Bible gives instructions to parents and children in Ephesians 6:1ff. The church’s work it to AID the family in growing in the grace and knowledge of Christ, hence, Bible schools in church are to AID in Bible training at home!
- 7.We have learned the importance of priorities. Jesus lived and emphasized the importance of putting God first in Matthew 6:33. Is God first in your life?
- 8.It has provided opportunities to “think outside the box” and, without compromise, be creative in ways we might not have otherwise. We need to realize that we need to spread the gospel in ways people can understand! What worked in the 1950s does not work as well today – we need to connect with a person where they are! Again, it must be without compromise – we cannot change the Bible to make salvation and Christian living easier than, or harder than, God has commanded.
- 9.We have strengthened our online presence. One of our dear sisters asked a very great question as we went to online services – she asked, “Why weren’t we using this before now?” We do live stream the services, but using Zoom as an opportunity to build one another up is something we need to use more and more – even after we come back.
- 10.The pandemic has sped up the learning curve for so many of us in the use of technology to communicate the gospel. To be able to use Zoom, to watch online services, to use this for online Bible studies has helped, not hurt. Also, all of us who have “smart phones” and “tablets” can use them to share the gospel with others.
NOW NOTICE THE NEXT FEW AND THEIR RELATIONS TO ONE ANOTHER IN THE CHURCH
- 1.It has perhaps, helped us understand the anticipation of the reunion that heaven will be like. Do you look forward to that day? I hope so!
- 2.It has made us appreciate the time we have together with one another. I have heard from many who have missed seeing others at church services. We do not realize what we have and NEED until we can’t do it anymore.
- 3.This has forced us more into other people’s lives. We have made more “visits” by phone calls and other means, since we have “social distanced from one another.” We try to stay in touch better than ever.
- 4.It has made us pay more attention to one another.
- 5.It has created a hunger for the togetherness we have and enjoy in Jesus.
MORE THOUGHTS NEXT WEEK