We’re nearing the end of February, but the year still feels quite new! We’ve turned to a fresh page in our books, a new chapter in our lives. We’ve written up new goals and plans for 2022 (my friends have even started to plan for the next summer holidays!). We’ve gotten rid of old habits and adopted new ones. 

Yet, even after going through all these, we're still not as enthusiastic about the new year as we were before… But why?

Because right now, we are living through uncertain times. Wearing masks, sanitizing hands, social distancing, checking in, showing proof of vaccinations, and an extra one that most of us get asked, “Are you under sixteen?”

All of a sudden, they’ve all become the norms in today’s society. Covid hit us when we least expected it, and now we find ourselves staying at home more often, despite the fact that there’s no lockdown; We’re either too scared to meet up with friends or our plans are abruptly canceled, and as we flick on the TV on to watch the news, the screen is instantly filled with headlines flashing: "New Case Identified".

Some of us may start to question, “Where is God in all of this? Why is He letting all this happen? Is God even still here?” 

A Play Gone Wrong…. Or Has It?

Imagine this. We are an audience watching a play. But this isn’t just any play. It’s a play representing our world - and God is the director. The play starts, and it’s smooth sailing for most of the performance. We’re lying back in our seats, enjoying the show. 

But out of nowhere, an accident occurs (and a rather unfortunate one at that). We’re on the edge of our seats as we watch the whole play seemingly fall apart. We’re unable to take our eyes off the stage, which seems to be full of chaos and confusion with actors going haywire. Suddenly from the audience there comes a cry, “Where’s the director? Why isn’t He stopping the performance?” There was no doubt that it was what we were all thinking. It seemed as if everything that could’ve gone wrong, was going wrong…. 

Or so we thought.

Disastrous events happen one after another, and the director is still a no-show…. or at least there aren't any obvious actions to take control of the situation. A person sitting in one of the front row seats leans forward, squinting, as they try to get a better view. Their eyes go wide and they shout to the rest of the audience, “Hey, I don’t think it was an accident. Look closely!” At first, we couldn't understand what they were talking about. But as we pay closer attention to what is happening, we experience an epiphany. “Ohhh,” We say. “I get it now; It was a part of the play!” 

Now put it like this: the “big accident” in this analogy is Covid. This pandemic has given us a big blow, and we were certainly not ready for it. We’ve faced many challenges; some have even lost their jobs and become unable to feed themselves, let alone feed their families. We are quick to think, “Why is this happening? Why is God not doing anything to stop all this suffering?”. We become oblivious to the fact that it might be a part of God’s plan, just like how the audience had no idea that there was a “big accident” included in the script and thought that the play had gone wrong. Then the audience started to wonder if the director was even there, when in fact, He was controlling the play the whole time. Why didn’t He stop the play? Because it was He Himself who wrote the script to have a “big accident” in it. 

In the midst of all the panicking due to Covid, we turn a blind eye to one simple fact: God ordains ALL things, including this pandemic

All the anxiousness gets to us, and we start to see things as if everything is going wrong. When our focus is directed towards our fears, we fail to remember God’s authority and that He is in total control. We may not understand at times why this is all happening - like how the audience was puzzled as to why the play turned out the way it did - but God (the director) knows far better than us. 

Especially during these times of doubt, we must learn to put our trust in Him. The future ahead of us may seem unpredictable and turbulent, but we can rest assured because we know that in God’s sovereignty, all things will be worked out to His will; His good, pleasing and perfect will (Romans 12:2).

A Backstage Pass

Romans 8:28 states, 

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.” 

All things, including good and bad circumstances, will work together for the good of those who love God. Even Covid. 

There are many instances in life where we doubt that anything good would come out of times of trouble. This is because, by default, our human nature causes us to be narrow-minded, and we become incapable of understanding God’s ways, for they are far too complex for us to grasp. 

We read in Isaiah 55:8-9

“‘For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,’ declares the Lord. ‘As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.’”

But sometimes, in His mercy, God opens our minds to understand a tiny part of why He lets certain things happen….

…. and we would feel like we had just made a huge discovery. 

This was exactly what happened to me just a few weeks ago. Personally, I have found that if this pandemic did not happen, I wouldn’t have learnt the importance of putting our faith in God during troubling times. Furthermore, I wouldn’t have realized how much of a blessing it is to be able to go to church and have fellowship with fellow brothers and sisters in Christ. 

Have you ever stopped to think whether Covid could be a “blessing in disguise”? Have you been able to spend more time with your family? More time to focus on God’s word? I hope that we may all take the time to wonder, as unlikely as it seems, what blessings we have been given through Covid. 

It’s a lot like having a backstage pass. You get to see a little part of the director's plan, the “behind-the-scenes.” And you realise that if the “big accident” hadn’t occurred, other beneficial things wouldn’t have happened either.

Our Play Continues

The play we are a part of, called “reality,” has not yet ended. We’re still going! Yes, we may be living through unwanted circumstances at the moment, but we can be at peace because God has written the script, and that script from eternity past to eternity future has always been and will be perfect. Let this be our reassurance as we continue to strive through these times of uncertainty. 

May it be so that, if it is God’s will, when this pandemic is all over, we will say, “‘Surely this is our God; we trusted in him, and he saved us. This is the LORD, we trusted in him; let us rejoice and be glad in his salvation.’” (Isaiah 25:9).