On Friday, I watched the press conference where Costa Rica’s President Carlos Alvarado declared it’s time to “put the hammer” to the virus. By keeping people at home so they can better trace who they’ve been in contact with.
Then they went on to tell us all the “sanitary restrictions” that they are imposing on us. Just like they did during Holy Week. We can only drive on Sundays and Thursdays. When will this end?
I rolled my eyes and thought, “I don’t know why they respond to this virus by asking us to hide. Won’t the same virus be there when we come out? Surely there’s a better way to beat it.”
I felt the LORD’s rebuke, “What if they are doing the best they know how?”
I have a confession. I have been fighting this quarantine from the beginning. Fighting, fighting, fighting. Resisting, complaining, arguing, angry.
When I talk with people who have enjoyed the time, who seem to be learning so much, or who have faith in how God is at work, I feel annoyed or lost, like I’m missing out on something. And I am.
But after hearing the LORD’s rebuke, for the first time in four months, I feel at rest. Like I’m finally syncing up with the LORD’s agenda. I can embrace the moment.
Do you remember the 80’s movie “The Karate Kid”? It’s a movie about a new kid who is bullied, so he finds an old sensei who will teach him karate so he can defend himself.
The first part of his training doesn’t seem like training at all. Mr. Miyagi appears to be having him do his busywork, his household projects. Wax on, wax off. Paint the fence. Sand the floor.
But Daniel doesn’t see it that way, and he’s ready to quit. “Ah, not everything is as it seems…” Mr. Miyagi replies.
But he’s been in secret apprenticeship, as Mark Buchanan says in his book “Things Unseen: Living with Eternity in Your Heart.”
So while we’re in our secret apprenticeship, not knowing all that the LORD is training us in and for,
stay with His program.
Fulfill your ministry calling. Fight the good fight. Keep the faith.
Last thing. I originally wrote this for a sermon I preached on Sunday for the VidaNet staff, our next-door neighbors we’ve been worshiping with since the quarantine started. The very next day, their founder DeLynn Hoover died of a heart attack. He was 48, leaving behind his wife Gloria, daughter Carmelinda, and son-in-law Vincent. It is unthinkable, unimaginable. We’re all still in shock. I thought I was just encouraging them for the difficulty of quarantine. It turns out God knew precisely what they’d need. This Fertilizer is dedicated to DeLynn. He passionately devoted his life to making disciple-makers. VidaNet is an organization committed to transforming lives and communities through discipleship in Central America. If you’d like to donate to VidaNet,