The COVID-19 outbreak was declared a pandemic on 30 January of this year and it was then where most of our lifestyles changed for the worse. Under the scourge of the disease no sector of the economy was spared. Everyone scrambled to adapt to the situation in hopes of maintaining some form of functionality amidst these times. By God’s grace I was fortunate enough to remain at the backend of things, largely unscathed by the broken status quo. However, like many others I saw a sudden change to my lifestyle. This change opened avenues to walk closer with God or to stray further from Him.
I am currently serving National Service (NS), and the Work-From-Home (WFH) arrangement implemented nationwide saw myself stranded with an inordinate amount of time in my hands. I was determined to make the most of this time through reading, devotionals and prayer. After all, I knew that an idle mind was not the state I wanted to find myself in. A lack of time or a busy schedule were no longer acceptable excuses to skim on spiritual investments; it was a perfect opportunity to know God better and cultivate a form of habitual quiet time.
Just like eating a meal, I had eaten all the good food on the table and whatever was leftover, I gave to God.
As far as noble sentiments go, they often lose momentum after a period despite their well-intentioned beginnings. I felt myself spending more time in meaningless activities (especially gaming) which resulted in me prioritising God to around 12 to 1am. A period of time where all my energy has been spent on the ‘tedious’ goings of the day and whatever energy I had left was insufficient to read and meditate whole-heartedly. Just like eating a meal, I had eaten all the good food on the table and whatever was leftover, I gave to God.
The first of the first-fruits of thy land thou shalt
bring into the house of the Lord thy God.
Oblivious to the fact, God graciously gave me the words of John Piper in his book “a Godward heart”. Piper implores readers in his book to ‘flee every spiritual dulling activity’. The sentence resonated deeply with me as I was made privy to my unfair prioritising of God. Coincidentally, my devotionals then happened to be on the Israelites in the wilderness. I was reminded that these group of stiff-necked individuals also knew how to give the best of their wealth and efforts in the construction of the tabernacle−I’ve never read the word ‘cubits’ so many times in my life.
If COVID-19 has done anything for me, is that it taught me that we do not have to wait for a pandemic to begin amping up our seeking of the Lord and that our effort in seeking God’s face should not be done with leftovers but as the priority of the day.
The LORD is pleased with those who fear Him,
who hope in His loving devotion.