It is incredible that God will claim, and has claimed, believers as His children. God is our Father. God uses this relationship picture in a very purposeful way in our relationship with Himself. We all have the human understanding of fatherhood that lends us to see our heavenly Father in relationship with us.

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James 4:14-15

14 Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.
15 For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.

It has been an interesting couple of months. I have heard multiple times, from different generations, that they have never experienced or seen anything like this in their lifetimes! The amazing thing to me is some of the reactions we have witnessed around the globe. As we see things beginning to return to normal in many parts of our country, it still amazes me to hear people say "It's too soon" or "We need to wait."

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Romans 8:22-27

Verse 22, "... groaneth and travaileth in pain ..."
Verse 23, "... we ourselves groan within ourselves, ..."
Verse 26, "... with groanings which cannot be uttered."

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Many within our government, media, and healthcare organizations have used the term pandemic to describe our surroundings; to describe our lives during the spread of this Coronavirus. Most often, these talking heads use the word as a noun, but pandemic can also be used as an adjective to describe an illness or other health-related issue that covers a broad range of geography and a high proportion of people. No matter your thoughts on COVID-19, Wuhan, conspiracy theories and all the rest, the influence upon our daily lives has been staggering. I believe we could be justified in ascribing the word pandemic to our change in lifestyle, not just the symptomatic results of a virus upon a physical body. In the United States, what was once a bustling economy and a very busy way of life for its citizens has now come to a dramatic pause that has only ever been fantasized about in books, movies, and television shows.

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Many great people of God have given their lives for the sake of the gospel. Beginning with Stephen in Acts 7, well-known saints throughout history have given their lives for Christ. In ancient history, we read about the steadfastness of Irenaeus or Polycarp. In recent history, we have people like John Hus or William Tyndale. In modern history, we have followers of Jesus like Jim Elliot or Cassie Bernall. Whatever your perspective, there remains a long line of faithful servants of God whose faith was tested in a definitive way - martyrdom.

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