The COVID-19 (i.e. Coronavirus of 2019) that hit America and Philadelphia in particular in 2020 will be remembered by Spiritual People in another way apart from the medical sickness, death and lock-down/shut-in. We are all sorry to know of the illnesses and deaths in Philly and elsewhere. And we mourn with others who lost someone (family member, relatives, friend, neighbor, etc). Loss of jobs/employment and change of jobs or lifestyle will also be remembered. How the Government System responded and people reactions will also be a memory for many people. As of today (May 24, 2020) there is no known cure or vaccine yet for the virus. So more life changes and events will happen even as starting June 5, 2020 Gov Wolf in the State PA will allow Philadelphia to move into the “Yellow” Phase 2 of reopening the City to work, travel, and other activities.
But on the Spiritual side of life, so far some of us will have memories. For example, I have never been a Fellowship Member of a Church that had to change it’s Worship Procedures because of a virus and problems from that. Online live video preaching and recording is not a normal or usual friend of mine. I prefer to be inside the Church Building (when I can ) than oto it at home watching or listening to others Worshiping God. But some seem to like or prefer that stay at home and “watch” the Service live even to the point, after so many weeks, that it seems they are slothful to return to Church Service the way it is designed to be done to worship God – Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching…Hebrews 10:25 KJV. Stay at home participation online is not the same as being inside the Church Building praising and worshiping God.
Then there is the preaching. Personally, I believe the Pastor at the local Church I attend has done good to preach the word of God week after week with the few 10 or less Saints inside the Building but the many/majority online via, for example, Facebook Live. But while the preaching of the word is still true, in spirit and in truth by faith, the “preaching to” others at home has been on my mind. I am concerned about those folks at home becoming complacent and “liking” it so, rather than coming back to Church in the Yellow Phase 2 and Green Phase 3 Re-opening Approval from Gov Wolf in PA. When someone seems disinterested in finding out and seeking information about when they can come back to Church, it may be a case of changing ones mind and not showing any concern about being inside the Church Building again, but getting comfortable with the “Online Church” religious church belief and custom/lifestyle that is prevalent across America.
Then there is the problem of prayer at home. While many of us do pray at home, with this Lock-down/Lock-in Atmosphere, some of us had to resort to much more “Prayer Walks” to keep our Prayer Life (with fasting) active. Sitting ay home watching too much tv, videos and such alike because of the COVID-19 and Church being “closed” is a challenge. We have to be careful of the spirit of laziness and slothfulness creeping up on us and taking residence in our life changed circumstances or situations at home. It is not a good thing not to make it out to Church inside the Building with others for over 11-12 weeks. We can never trust our fleshly mind to do the right thing. Our situation, if we are not careful, can put us in a mental or physical environment like David and Bathsheba (2 Samuel 11). Our too much free time from being at home, if we are not very careful, can get the flesh in trouble with God and against the Spiritual things of God.
And there are other example of Spiritual concerns because of the Lock-down/Lock-in from the COVID-19 Situation in Philly and America. What can we do and continue to do? The opportunity is coming again from Gov Wolf Yellow Phase 2 Approval whereby more will get the chance to be in the House of the Lord with like-minded people. Prayer in the House of the Lord with fellow Spirit-filled Believers is very different from that at home with a few people and some who may not be saved or attending Church anymore. So as much as possible, we can take the opportunity be in the House of the Lord and continue to apply more and greater Spiritual deeds in our life – geared towards and in line with godliness. There are still more people to be saved. So the opportunity is coming again to do what we can in whatever way we can to help someone know who God: Jesus is by faith in God and until the end of our days on this Earth (see 2 Timothy 4:7-8 and Matthew 24:13).