The following message was shared with leaders and members of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in the Euro-Asia Division, with headquarters in Moscow, Russia and encompassing a dozen other countries, on March 18, 2020. — Adventist Review Editors
Dear brothers and sisters, in the name of Jesus I wish you wellbeing!
It seems that society has a special code, thanks to which it decrypts and evaluates the church in the most responsible periods of life. Often, public confidence in the church increases many times over. This is facilitated by the fact that we uphold moral principles, protect spiritual values, and contribute to the intellectual development of society by offering the society clear and understandable sounding scriptures and spiritual and moral books. But still, the key code that allows society to decipher the church and appreciate the significance of its message is Christ’s words: “Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me” (Matthew 25:40, NIV).
Society expects real action from the church and its representatives, especially during a crisis. It is important that the same code helps the church to reveal and win over society. This code makes Christian light brighter and more attractive.
How could the church be of really significant help during this crisis?
First, stay optimistic. Try to perceive the world in bright colors. Show friendliness, smile, drive away fear and despondency with unshakable confidence in the power of the Lord. Today is the time to open the heart to the world, purified by the love of Jesus, and to show the power of faith, which makes each of us a winner in any struggle against evil (see 1 John 5:4).
Second, be positive. Do not make negative comments, either to the state authorities that are doing everything possible to cope with the disease, and even less to the sick people. On the contrary, as our Lord said: “When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near” (Luke 21:28, NIV).
The fulfillment of prophecies leads believers to humility. In humility, they prepare to meet their Lord, using the opening doors of opportunity to bring hope to others.
Third, be careful. Faith does not exclude common sense. Be an example in observing the basic requirements of hygiene, communication, and movement. Today, the fulfillment of the laws of health presented in the Holy Scriptures can save your life and save your neighbors.
Jesus is our Lord, and awareness of this makes our journey easier. We know that He goes ahead and holds our hand.
In John 10:28, 29, we find these inspiring words: “I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.”
A careful reading of this passage allows us to see how the mystery of human salvation occurs. The struggle is real; the danger is not farfetched; the state of man is close to critical. And then Heaven comes to the rescue.
How pleasant it is to realize that we are simultaneously in the hands of Christ and the Father, in the hands of the Creator of the universe. And nothing in this world can be more reliable than being called and being the children of God (see 1 John 3:1).
Continue to trust Jesus!
Become an anchor of hope and an island of security for a world seeking help in a crisis.
Point the gaze of the troubled and seeking people to Jesus Christ, because in Him alone is the salvation of the world possible.
I wish you the blessing and mercy of the Lord.
The original version of this release was posted by the Euro-Asia Division.