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3/22/2020 What Are We Prepared For? (我們準備好了嗎?)

by Rev. Benjamin Chung (鍾立恆牧師)


I spoke to an Australian pastor recently about COVID-19. He was on a mission trip in the Philippines, which is currently very hard hit. He recalls sitting on a bus with many people coughing and sneezing all over him. Then, when he got back to Australia, he said he had the worst “flu” he ever experienced. He believes he had COVID-19 because he suffered all the symptoms.


It is clear that this virus is making its way around the globe. It is a reminder that our world is a lot smaller than we think, by the way a virus can travel and cross continents through human interactions, for the most part. My pastor friend also pointed out that we need to be prepared not only spiritually for Jesus’s return, but also the responsibility we have as family members and even my responsibility to care for my family as a father and husband. The passage he cited was, “But if anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for members of his household, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever” (1 Timothy 5:8 ESV).


An important question we must ask ourselves is this, “How responsible have we been with our worldly resources?” “Are we prepared for the ‘Shelter in Place’ ordered by our city of SF and neighboring counties?” At this point in time, we are to shelter until 4/7. But school might not resume until much longer. How prepared are we in taking care of our children? Our finances? Do we have a rainy-day fund in place? Will your mortgage still be taken care of? The responsible believer is to be prepared to enter into God’s presence at any moment. At the same time, the responsible believer is to be prepared for unknown circumstances and still allow the Holy Spirit to work in the present situation.


This said, it is important that if we are not prepared, we need to start making preparations immediately—but without hoarding. In addition, if basic necessities are in need, please do voice out needs to those around you and even the church leaders. This is how we weather the storm together—by coming together in the midst of need. This is one of the important aspects of the local church. We are a family and we help one another as brothers and sisters in Christ. He shed his blood for us, and we are to shed our blood for others. God bless and may he help us through these testing! Stay strong in Christ Jesus!


Translation:


我最近和一位在的澳洲牧師談到了關於新冠狀肺炎的事情。他之前在菲律賓參加短宣工作(菲律賓現在正受到了新冠狀肺炎嚴重的打擊)。他回想起曾經在一程巴士上,有許多人在他的身

邊咳嗽和打噴嚏。然後當他回到澳洲時,他遭受了一生以來最嚴重的「感冒」。他認為自己可能之前患了新冠狀肺炎,因為他遭受了所有的症狀。


顯然,這病毒正在全球廣傳。這正提醒我們,其實這世界比我們想像中小得多。病毒可以通過人與人之間的傳播,越洋過洲。我這牧師朋友還提醒我,不僅需要為耶穌第二次回來做好準備,而且也要在地上,要以作為父親和丈夫作好照顧家庭的準備。他引用的經文是:「人若不看顧親屬,就是背了真道,比不信的人還不好,不看顧自己家裡的人,更是如此。」(提摩太前書5:8)


我們必須問自己的一些重要問題,例如:我們對父神給我們在世上的資源負有多大責任? 我們在三藩市灣區的「封城」做了多少準備?暫時,我們要封城至4 月7 日,但是學校可能還要等多時才能恢復。,我們如何做好照顧孩子的準備?我們的財務狀況如何?我們有雨天基金(為不時之需的存款)嗎?您能繼續供屋或交租嗎?作為信徒我們更要隨時準備耶穌第二次來臨,同時,一個負責任的信徒也要為未知的情況做好準備,隨時預備讓聖靈工作的來臨。


話需如此,如果我們還未準備好,我們需要立即開始進行準備(但不要囤積)。此外,如果有需要基本的必需品,請向您周圍的弟兄姊妹甚至是教會領袖講出需求。我們要以凝聚一起的方

式,共渡難關。這是地方教會重要工作之一。我們是一家人,我們要在基督裡作為弟兄姊妹互相幫助。祂為我們在十架上流血,我們也應為鄰舍和弟兄姊妹付出。願上帝保佑,願祂賜力量我們通過這些試驗!在基督耶穌裡成長,更堅強!

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