Natural disasters in the form of the Taal explosion, bushfires in Australia, devastating floods in Indonesia, and a swarm of locusts in East Africa. Social and moral degradation evidenced by a spike in racism, sexism, social inequality, crimes, violence, and immorality. Add to those the political and economic backdrop: upheavals against governments, rumors of wars, job layoffs, and recession. Finally, a pandemic that has infected nearly 30 million, taken the lives of about a million, and affected the way of life of every person in the planet. This is the world today.
On top of the world’s condition, we, as a church, are also shaken from within. That two of our pillars— our dearest mother in faith, Sis. Dory, and our visionary leader, Mayor Joni—are now gone is unimaginable, beyond any words could express.
Still, even as we are being hard pressed from every side, we cling to this hope: tragedies and trials and terrors may befall us now, but there awaits for us an eternity full of joy and empty of tears and sorrows… an eternity of gazing into the face of the One we love… and an eternity of being in God’s full presence and glory. Because our Lord, Christ the King, will come in splendor and snatch us away from this grief-stricken and chaos-ridden world and usher us into His glorious presence.
That is, IF we are prepared. If we truly accept Jesus in our hearts and wholly surrender our will to His Lordship. If we turn away from sin and keep our body, mind, heart, and soul consecrated to Him. If we abide in Him, take up our cross daily, and follow Him.
So let us not allow the conundrums of this world to steal our place in eternity. Any moment, the Lord will come. May He not find us unprepared, dallying with the enemy and dwindling in sin. Instead, let us keep our guards up, be more vigilant, and be more serious in our walk with God.
But we do not stop there. We prepare not just as individuals, but also as a church. Yes, this year is unlike any year we have been through, but we can never discount the 42 years of God’s unwavering goodness and faithfulness to the Jesus Is Lord Church Worldwide. He has always been with us—through the highs and especially through lows—and we will allow neither our griefs nor this pandemic to hinder us from praising and glorifying His Name:
- This year, we may be limited by restrictions and protocols, but we will not be limited in our expressions of praise, of gratitude, and of love to our most faithful God.
- This year, we may be unable to make Luneta, Rizal Park overflow with our attendance like we always have, but we will saturate all virtual platforms available and make a mark in history, to the glory of Jesus’ Name.
- This year, we may not be able to see each other physically, but we will make the world see; we will show the world that our worship and devotion to God is not limited by place… that the church will never close because we are the church.
It will be a most unusual anniversary celebration indeed. But it will be the most remarkable one. Therefore, on October 25, 2020, let us gather online and show the world that we, JIL people, whatever the season may be, would not be stopped in proclaiming that “Jesus IS Lord.”