People need hope. That's what the Christian faith offers; it offers hope in an uncertain world when coronavirus has affected not only our country but also the whole world. The question now is how are we as Christians going to behave in the situation we found ourselves in? More exactly, how we as professors and students of BTS should live in the times like these? What kind of difference can we bring into the world that does not have hope? One thing is sure and that is what the Christian faith offers: hope in this uncertain and hopeless world of today. People are scared, they are panicking, and that is why it is so important for churches and schools like ours not to cower in fear during this time. A.W. Tozer spoke to this, and it is so true even today: "A scared world needs a fearless church." Why is this so? Because the Bible tells us in 2 Timothy 1:7, "God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind." But at the same time C.S. Lewis puts it into the right perspective for us: "God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pain: it is His megaphone to rouse a deaf world." That is why we need to listen to God's voice even more during times like this.

This means only one thing and that is that God does not want us to be paralyzed with fear over this very real threat to our nation. At the same time, we need to balance our faith with practical precautions to take. Observe the government's regulations, like ceasing our BTS Modules, closing our Church services, staying at home if we are over 65 years of age and if needed in quarantine, washing our hands, wearing masks... and these do not indicate lack of faith. Unfortunately, there are some who simply claim, "God is our protection!" and therefore claim that we do not have to listen to what the government says. This sentiment is not true for us. Actually it is diametrically opposed to what we are to do. We need to pray as if our safety completely depends upon God and at the same time take precautions as if our safety depends completely on us.b> This way our privileges in the Lord are balanced with the responsibility towards others and ourselves in our society. Definitely, by doing this we do not nullify God's sovereignty and protection, but instead act responsibly in society which is ordered by a God-given government which is doing all it can to protect us from this evil for our good. (Rom. 13:4). But is this all we are to concern ourselves with as Christians?

This, as someone may say, is a passive reaction toward the coronavirus and is not everything. We need also active action! That which we as leaders, pastors, professors and students need to have more than anything right now is wisdom from the Lord as how to minister to the needs of our beloved people in this unique situation. God's people have in the past always proven themselves through these kinds of difficult times and should do this even today. We are right now in unchartered territory and that is why it is important to utilize every resource or tool available to help our nation. The Apostle Paul encourages us in this with words from Galatians 6:10, "So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith."

May the Lord grant us strength, vision, opportunities and creative ideas as to how to minister to our most needy members of our churches and society. May our reaction in this way be active, as those works of mercy will speak the Gospel of Christ very loudly. Let us do this in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ and for His glory (Mt. 25:35-36). In this way we will serve the purposes of God in our generation and will use all of the precious opportunities He gives us to serve Him in the Balkans.