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I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. 2 Timothy 4:7 ESV

As the impact of COVID-19 on our economy and health care system continues to worsen, for many people, everyday living may feel like a boxing fight. For many people who are infected with coronavirus, this is a fight between life and death. In some cases, those infected have no health insurance because they have lost their jobs. These people are fighting a medical and an economic battle at the same time.

Despite the gravity of the crisis we are now facing with the pandemic, I want to encourage believers to hold on. Stormcloud may rise and strong winds may blow, but we have to hold on. We have to trust that joy will come despite the tears we may have to shed. That does not mean we will not suffer. Indeed, many of us may lose loved ones as well as our employments. Some of us will be infected with COVID-19. Yet we have to hold on!

How do we hold on when the pandemic is worsening, and the economy remains in a state of depression? We have to trust God and take him at his word. His word says “many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him from them all” (Psalm 34:19). The word of the Lord also says, “And call upon me in the day of trouble, I will deliver you, and you shall glorify me” (Psalm 50:15).

All we can do as believers is to walk in the faith that God will never forsake us. He loves us too much to allow us to be consumed by the vicissitudes of life. It is because of his love for us that we are not consumed (Lamentations 3:22). Therefore, when we are pressed on every side, we will not be crushed. We may get perplexed by the suffering we see in this country and around the world. However, we should never allow despair to darken our souls. Instead, we have to hold on and trust that our God will deliver us and make a way for us to come out of our trials with a testimony.

We have come this far by faith. Many believers have had to trod the stony roads of persecution, marginalization, economic deprivation, and political disenfranchisement. Yet we have to hold on and continue to fight the good fight and finish the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith (Hebrews 12:1). Our strength to hold on is anchored in our faith in Jesus Christ. Because Christ triumphed over death and is highly exalted in the heavens, we believe we can persevere through hardships and remain faithful in our trials.

When we hold on in trials, we are also encouraging others who may be struggling far more than we are, to hold on as well. Indeed, our perseverance and hopefulness may well be the encouragement that keeps someone from quitting on himself or herself and commit suicide. We may also someone to achieve a goal or fulfill a life-long dream.

As difficult as things may get at times, believers are empowered by the Holy Spirit to press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. That means we have to stay the course even when we cannot see our way ahead. We have to stand on the promises of God even while we are reaping in tears.

We have to hold on because we are more than conquerors in Christ Jesus. God did not bring us this far to forsake us or allow our struggles to consume us. All things will work together for our good no matter how difficult things may get. We have to keep the faith and press forward until we transition from labor to reward.

Prayer- Blessed Lord, thank you for giving us the Holy Spirit to help us hold on in trials. May those who are struggling with the coronavirus pandemic find the strength in you to hold on.

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