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Our help is in the name of the LORD, who made heaven and earth. Psalm 124:8 ESV

A new variant of Covid-19 has been discovered in England prompting the UK government to impose a Tier 4 lockdown in London and southeastern England and tighten restrictions for all of England over the Christmas holiday season. The Health Secretary of England, Matt Hancock said on Sunday – the new variant is “out of control,” with a daily recorded 35,928 new cases of Covid-19. Consequently, most countries in the world have banned travel to and from England.

The concern about this new variant of Covid-19 is exacerbated by the fact that scientists are concerned the new virus is on the pathway to becoming resistant to vaccines. Ravindra Gupta, a professor of clinical microbiology at the University of Cambridge, said "Whilst it may not be actually resistant, it may not take so many changes after this for it to get there." The new variant has so far been identified in Denmark, the Netherlands, and Australia, Van Kerkhove said. It is only a matter of time before this new variant of Covid-19 crosses the Atlantic to wreak havoc in the US.

Just when people were starting to feel a bit of relief in the fight against Covid-19 because of the vaccine from Pfizer and Moderna, we are now faced with the possibility those vaccines may not be the solution we have been anticipating. In the meantime, the death toll is increasing daily, and any hope for a return to normalcy has vanished. Only God knows how we are going to come out of this international and cataclysmic crisis.

Today’s text reminds us that our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth. While world leaders remain mystified by the impact of Covid-19, we are all reminded we cannot live without God. The Lord is our very present help in times of trouble. The pandemic has exposes the limitations of modern science and the impotence of human ingenuity. Only God can help us to come out of this nightmare.

The pandemic is also causing an increasing number of people to suffer from mental disorders, including panic disorder, phobias, depression, bipolar disorder, and other mood disorders, eating disorders, personality disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, psychotic disorders, including schizophrenia. Mental disease professionals are just now beginning to understand the magnitude of the challenge they face. Many of them are quitting the profession or battling with their own mental disorder because of their inability to deal with the crisis facing their profession.

This crisis presents the Church of Jesus Christ with a great opportunity to remind the world that Jesus is the hope of the world. During this Christmas holiday season, Christians have to yet again invite the world to accept that Jesus came in a manger in Bethlehem to save the world. The world needs hope and help that can only be found in Jesus Christ. As Stuart Townend & Keith Getty said:

In Christ alone, my hope is found,

He is my light, my strength, my song

This Cornerstone, this solid Ground

Firm through the fiercest drought and storm.

What heights of love, what depths of peace

When fears are stilled, when strivings cease

My Comforter, my All in All

Here in the love of Christ, I stand.

Questions for Personal Reflection

In times like these, where do you go for help?

How can your faith in God help you and others to navigate through this pandemic?

Prayer- Blessed Lord, thank you for being my hope and the source of my help. May my faith in you strengthened as I navigate through these difficult times.

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