DAY 1. Read 2 Timothy 3:1-5
THE SIGNS OF TOUGH TIMES
Key Verse: “Don’t be naive. There are difficult times ahead…” (2 Timothy 3:1-5 MSG).
Let us get it right, tough times did not start with COVID -19. Paul predicted tough times long before now. Tough times existed long before November 2019 when COVID -19 started. But COVID -19 worsened the times we are in. Tough times are characterized by the existence of certain conditions.
During tough times uncertainty exists, that is to say, nothing is certain. The uncertainty caused by COVID-19 is unprecedented. During tough times nothing is predictable. All our plans are disrupted. Our travel plans, business plans, family plans, social plans like weddings, etc. are all disrupted.
During tough times fear prevails. Nothing takes root at this time like fear. There is a fear of death. Fear of the unknown; fear of the unseen virus; fear of the loss of jobs; fear of the loss of income; fear of the welfare of family members, etc.
During tough times there is so much anxiety and worry. This is always caused by the prevailing conditions. During tough times the stress level increases. As people were forced to stay home due to the coronavirus pandemic, the crisis created a pressure-cooker situation for domestic violence, aggravating stress, and isolation.
During tough times there is tension. The tension may be caused by the news of frequent deaths, like during COVID-19. The news of the death of someone we know causes tension. The tension increases when it is not certain who will be the next in line to die. When there is a downturn in the economy it causes tough times. The world economy and the Nigerian economy have plummeted. This is having a great toll on all of us.
Whenever there is a recession, many jobs are lost. It is always a very painful and sad experience when we are victims of job losses. During tough times, the rate of unemployment keeps rising. During tough times, there is a dislocation in personal income. Tough times reveal the worst character in people.
PRAYER: Lord, be my helper in this time of trouble (Psalm 46:1).