Swept by the flood
Whether it bothered the people or not when they saw Noah grind cypress wood and pitch, making a shapeless structure, at least according to the Bible life moved on normally in the community; weddings continued to take place. People savored their barbeques served with chilly and grapes wine. Little did they know about the flood that would sweep them. After 150 days, even though Noah and his family had been saved, life was never the same again. (Genesis 5:32-10:1).
Walls came down tumbling
Similarly, the excitement to reach heaven by the people of Shiner would be cut short sooner than later. All they wanted was to make a name for themselves. God did not sweep them away but you needed to have witnessed the confusion that ensued God’s interruption. How painstakingly long would it have taken for a fundi at the top of the building to ask for one brick (which, abruptly had changed the name in line with new instituted languages) in order to continue with the project! God used the language barrier to interrupt the concerted arrogance of man (Genesis 11:1-9).
Unfortunately, for the fellows in Sodom and Gomorrah, they would never live to see the aftermath of their city, now reduced into a heap of ashes, too consumed by the fire of God’s wrath. They did not know their abominable sodomy had exceeded the elastic limit the night they harassed Lot’s visitors. It must have been a whole new experience for Lot who lost his wife in the process (Genesis 19).
Their king taken away
In Gethsemane, it was not the first prayer retreat Jesus had gone to with the disciples. That night before Jesus was arrested, it was business as usual for the disciples of Jesus. The disciples were used to the life of moving from one place to another. When they didn’t have bread, multiplication took effect and twelve baskets of leftovers would be collected after feeding thousands. They needed not to worry about the Pharisees tricking questions because their master knew it all, as long as they would clarify with Jesus during dinner time.
Life was secured. There was no need for a life insurance cover now that even the stormy sea of Galilee was no longer a threat. But that night in Gethsemane, everything was going to change drastically. Who would have thought the daring Peter would melt like wax before a maidservant when he sensed the risk of going down with Jesus! James and John’s ambitions of sitting next to Jesus were overthrown. Everything was gone in a day and a new dawn met the scared disciples.
In all these events, there was an abrupt change in the lives of the characters involved. At close examination, you will notice that God was at the center stage causing things to move towards new directions. During Noah’s and Lot’s time, God’s anger wiped away a whole wicked generation. God wanted to start afresh– building a new community uncorrupted by the prevailing wickedness. In the case of the Tower of Babel and the Disciples of Jesus, there was need for the people to focus on God’s bigger picture, of building a community that would spread out and fill the earth, in keeping with his sovereign purpose of redemption.
The world stops
Ever since COVID-19 was pronounced a pandemic, a lot has changed especially in Africa. For example, social distancing is not innate in our culture but also you need the commitment of everyone else for it to make sense, something that is proving to be difficult to enforce even for the authorities. For the first time many are wondering what is so special about touching their faces because it appears like they can’t help it!
Moreover, a number of those planning for events have had to make very tough decisions ever since the government sternly encouraged social distancing with some painfully postponing indefinitely or canceling the events altogether. Learning in schools has been disrupted and Churches have had to suspend their activities and gatherings as well. Life has been interrupted big time! The Church, the State, and the world indeed has stopped to respond to COVID-19. When God interrupts life, there is always a message He is communicating to an individual or a whole nation. When He calls for the attention of the world, there is a message for the world. Might it be that we have ignored God’s gentle whispers, and now we have to listen to the inescapable blare of his loudspeakers?
We must reflect
Certainly, it is a high time to search our souls and examine our relationship with God. Could God be awakening the hardened conscience of our society? Is God showing us that we need to care for each other and not steal all the public money, now that however much rich you are, you are now as good as the poor man? Could God be drawing the Church back to her mandate, away from our unashamed preoccupation with self-interests? Could it be the time to rethink of our priorities in life and our day to day preoccupation?
Whichever way you look at it, God has interrupted life, we must sit back and re-evaluate our lives. If God, by his infinite mercies gives us the chance to survive Covid-19, we must live our lives differently, reflecting his love, mercy, and grace and focus on Him alone.