“Is COVID-19 a curse from the Lord?”
words were asked by an ANM partner named Dara in Cambodia. She had heard nothing about the intensity or scope of the virus until the middle of March. Suddenly the news blasted grim details of how many people were infected and how many had died. The coronavirus was serious and widespread. Schools closed, church gatherings were banned, and people were told to stock up on food. There was also talk about the banks closing.
Dara said, “I was scared of everything! I was worried and fearful. I had questions. How long would it last? What will happen next? What should I do?”
She spent time with the Lord reading the Bible, praying, and claiming God’s promises. She worshipped. Her attitude changed.
“It’s like I woke up from a very deep sleep and realized how complacent I was in my walk with the Lord. I immediately examined myself and asked for forgiveness for my neglect. I also asked the Lord to give me wisdom on how to handle the situation. Instead of focusing on the pandemic and social distancing, I prayed about how my team and I could keep doing the Lord’s work here in Cambodia. With God’s help we were able to start ministry in a way we had never done before.”
On March 16, 2020, Dara and her ministry team began live streaming their devotions Monday through Friday evenings from 7:30–8:30 p.m. They invited families and friends, believers and unbelievers both in country and abroad. They also invited the parents of the students from the school they operated and had to close. The response was far more than they expected. The hearts of Dara and her team overflowed with joy and praise when they saw the names and numbers of those who were listening. They then figured out a way to conduct Bible studies, discipleship classes, prayer times and church services online.
Because of the pandemic more hearts are open to the gospel. The ministry has taken this opportunity to share God’s free gift of salvation through Jesus Christ to more people! Instead of hoarding food, they are sharing it, especially with those who have lost their jobs.
Dara told us, “The villagers know that we love them because we are caring for them and giving them a way out of their fear by trusting Jesus and depending on Him. The effect on their lives is thrilling.”
Is COVID-19 a curse? This ministry leader answered it this way. “NO! COVID-19 motivated me to draw closer to Him, to do all things for His glory, and to strive toward Christlikeness. The good news of the gospel is being embraced by many people who are now ready to hear it. God’s daily provision is sufficient, His daily protection is always present, God’s people are united in prayer, and families have more time to be together. Our God is an awesome God and I praise Him for working through us during this time.”