The attention of the world in the last few weeks has focussed primarily if not exclusively on the devastating impact of the COVID-19 virus. The news in all its formats has captivated the attention of people across the globe. The spread of the virus has moved with such rapidity, like a mountain stream gathering momentum down its slopes. Never before in our own lifetime has an invisible enemy caused so much chaos, fear and uncertainty. However, in the midst of this sinister invasion, we have heard stories of kindness, care and selflessness in the hope that it will come to an end sometime soon.
There will, of course, be further consequences of this outbreak which may only be fully revealed once the virus has been dealt with. However, in the hearts of many Jesus followers the question will be, ‘What is the Lord saying in all of this?’ We have heard the phrase, things cannot go back to what they were before this outbreak. We feel this is very true for the Church that Jesus is building. It cannot be business as usual.
Paul, in Romans 12 reminds us, “to be transformed.” The picture as many will be aware comes from the word transformation. The process involves the caterpillar, which stops eating and then hangs from a leaf or twig and spins itself a silky cocoon and develops into a chrysalis. Within this protective coating, the caterpillar radically transforms its body and eventually emerges as a butterfly. A beautiful picture of our own walk with Jesus, a transformation of life within.
As with the caterpillar, so with the redeemed of the Lord. It is time to emerge, breaking through the isolation of our silky cocoon into a new day where the light of the glory of the Lord is seen in our parks and coffee bars, our work canteens and shopping centres, our neighbourhoods, our beaches and our families. We can never be the same, it will never be business as usual but a new song will arise in the hearts and voices of those who follow the King. Come Holy Spirit and transform us!