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The Medicine We Need

Yes, we are sick and looking for medicine. Our labs and doctors are racing to find vaccines. But what if the virus were itself medicine for a national illness?  If you look at the Bible, you’ll see that God is often talking with society about the things that afflict it. And usually the pres…
By Seth Barnes
By Seth Barnes

Yes, we are sick and looking for medicine. Our labs and doctors are racing to find vaccines. But what if the virus were itself medicine for a national illness? 

If you look at the Bible, you’ll see that God is often talking with society about the things that afflict it. And usually the prescription involves a national humbling and calling out to God. If that can happen, then healing follows.

We see the story of God dialoguing with Solomon (who represents a group of humans) about a plague that he allows to afflict the nation in 2 Chron. 7. And he gives a prescription:

“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

If you were to diagnose us, what would you call this societal sickness that afflicts us? In the global family of nations, we are viewed by many as the bully. We’re the ones that others often avoid or tire of. We’re rich, powerful and overweight. If you look at our politicians, they are caricatures of our national character.

We coddle our children so that they can grow up that way too. We shower them with technology. We spend too much on it and put it on our credit cards. And we prioritize our autonomy so much that we break the natural feedback loops of people in community.

How ironic that the richest nation in the history of the world should be so fearful and anxious! As 2019 ended three months ago, our way of living wasn’t working. Our inner illness had no outlet in normal human conversation, so it manifested in the toxicity of our social media and politics. At a safe distance, we said things about one another that we’d never say in person.

This virus is scary – the death rate is climbing today. What if the pain of our national situation were to cause us to humble ourselves? What if we individually were to begin to reach out in humility and own our part in this? 

I’ve never enjoyed taking medicine, but at some point, the possibility of getting better outweighs my aversion to whatever the doctor prescribed. It’s the same way when God asks me to humble myself. I hate going to people who have hurt me and apologizing for my part in the broken relationship.

Let’s start with ourselves. How is your relationship with your parents? How are you as a parent? How are you with your other family members or friends? Who are you at odds with?

I’m going to take this admonition to heart and write a few people who have hurt me or who I’ve hurt. Let’s begin to humble ourselves and seek God for the healing he so wants to give us.

Comments (18)

  • Great word Seth. Holy Spirit inspired. Thank you for your boldness and voice of truth in love. Keep bringing it. This nation needs to wake up to the calling of honoring, serving and worshiping the one true God. Jesus heal this land of the virus but more importantly, heal our hearts. Turn our face to you. In Jesus name.

  • Seth, there is real wisdom here. Lately I’ve been reminded of the fact that we are called to a life of humble service where we lay down our lives for others. I’m grateful for you and our decades of friendship. Love you.

  • Thanks, Joel. I wondered if it would feel too harsh to readers. I’m glad it at least landed w/ you!

  • Butch – that’s it. Laying down our lives for others. Yes, thanks for your friendship. We’re getting on in years…

  • Not too harsh….just speaking truth in love here. Thank you, Seth, for the challenge to examine my own life with these thoughts in mind.

  • Thanks for sharing. This is affirming. I’ve been wrestling with this for the past few weeks. Trying to apply the global prayer and call to repentance to me personally. I’ve already written a few letters and felt reluctant to send a few more. I will press on guided by the Holy Spirit to know who and when.

  • I am always at awe at how you are able to articulate the very things I’m feeling and seeing and I don’t know you from a can of paint! Thank you for your ministry and sticking with spreading the good news of the Balm in Gilead that can heal us! God bless you! God bless your ministry! May God keep you always!

  • Hi Seth
    Every word you said is true, but the problem is that most lost people don’t understand that humbling themselves to God and repenting is the solution, Out of ignorance they get mad at God and blame Him for our many problems. They harden their hearts towards God just like they’ll do in the end times. Because of this we must pray that God will pour out more grace, more patience, and strip off the spiritual blinders that are destroying them. Prayer is the real work of the body of Christ. I need to do more of this myself, We need a greater compassion for the lost, a greater love that will motivate us to pray and intercede for them.
    God bless you Seth

  • Yes – we need to do the work of prayer. Especially now while we have been given the time to do it. Thanks Richard.

  • Seth,
    At the end of last year I felt so strongly that God was calling my husband and I to a new season in life. Then the virus hit and I lost my job. I confess, I questioned how this new season would play out. My youngest daughter, Amber Barton, had helped me set up an app on my phone to listen to audio books. With extra time on my hands, I’ve been listening to ‘Kisses From Katie’ while preparing a small patch of my backyard for vegetables. I feel a confirmation in my spirit, from your blog and listening to this book, that we, as Christ followers, need to fall to our knees, humble ourselves, truly yearn and seek His will, His ways, His Love. Perhaps this will be a new season for many. Perhaps this will be a new season of intentionality for God’s will, for His love to be spread throughout the nations. Starting with us right here, right now, in our own homes.
    Blessings from Oklahoma

  • Great word, Seth. A loving father corrects his kids. He doesn’t let them run wild for long. I try to catch his correction in the little ways before he has to ramp it up. I don’t always succeed!

  • This is so good Seth and along the lines of what’s been on my heart. Thanks for putting it in words. I miss you!

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Seth Barnes

I'm motivated to join God in his global reclamation project. He's on the move, setting his sons and daughters free from their places of captivity. And he's partnering with those of us who have been freed to go and free others.

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