“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.” – Philippians 4:6-9
The Philippines is now one of the longest standing nations in lockdown; from March 2020, until the present time – which is now seven months. The enforcement of the lockdown is by the Military. Anyone who is under the age of 21 and anyone over the age of 64 cannot leave their homes.
When you travel around, you need a quarantine pass, and when you are shopping, you need a quarantine pass and only one member of your family can leave. You also can’t travel to certain parts of the Philippines from your local residence without a travel pass.
What we are seeing across the country is thousands – if not millions – of youth that are going through depression and isolation. Forty percent of the country has now lost their jobs and we are looking that this might occur for a total of two years and three years for us to maybe come back to a normal place. During this time, there are certain things that our family is wondering what God is teaching us at this point and what we should be focusing on?
That brought us to Philippians 4:6-9; in this Scripture, it teaches us that we shouldn’t be anxious about anything, but pray about everything. One of the things that we did a lot during the beginning was worry and be anxious. It wasn’t until a couple of months later that constantly giving the situation to Jesus and allowing us to give him his wisdom became a lifestyle in this specific type of crisis.
The next part of the Scripture became very clear that we are supposed to focus on what is true, what is honorable, what is just, what is pure and lovely, commendable, excellent, worthy of praise. These specific attributes that we’re supposed to focus on, allowed us to see that there are many opportunities to share the love of Jesus Christ with those around us. One thing that we noticed every time that we were eating a meal is that most of the country is going hungry, at one point, during the lockdown, when all of the businesses were shut down, That gave us an opportunity to focus on Jesus’ love and how to love other people, and by the help of prayers and supporters around us, we were able to reach out to our community in a way that we weren’t able to reach out to them before.
The fruit of that was 200 disciples were made, and over 1,800 families were impacted. Until now, those families are still being impacted and those disciples are still being discipled. This scenario wouldn’t have happened unless we were able to see God in the midst of a crisis. We are unaware of what the Philippines will look like in the coming years; whether we have a vaccine from China, Russia, being forced by the military, whether the country is still in lockdown and more rights are being taken away, whether the country will ever go back to what we knew it was before, one thing that we know for sure is that God is good and God wants us to share his love to those around us.
We want to encourage everybody to learn from our mistakes and to use this global pandemic as a place to dive deeper into Philippians 4:6-9; for us to cast our anxieties to God, live a lifestyle of prayer, and being the solution to the problems around us.