By Gretchen Bayongan


Wow, it is already July! Who could have thought that God will twist our busy and unstoppable world the way we never imagined. What was normal was not anymore. We embraced the change and the circumstances that came along with it. Our faith was much challenged, to a point where we only had faith. As they say, when the circumstance is beyond our control, we learn to trust God desperately. It has been five months since the outbreak, but we are still standing and thriving, all glory to Him! God once again has proven his great love and everlasting mercy towards us. We have seen how He worked out things for us and provided grace so we can keep moving forward amidst the challenges.

One of the greatest encouragements I had in this period is the gift of friendship.

I cannot be grateful enough to God for my godly friends who dearly care and love me. Like everyone else, I had my share of trials and temptations, but God comforted me through these special people. One of the changes I had to face during this COVID19 period is to live on my own. Admittedly, it was a challenge, especially for the first few weeks, I had no choice but to be brave and whole-heartedly trust God for protection.

Sharing our devotions and prayers, watching preaching, constant communication via text or call, and even walking to parks are few of the experiences my friends and I did to be connected and accountable to each other’s faith. Although we do these things before, we were more intentional and consistent this time. These simple gestures did surely made life brighter and happier. What was more inspiring was that the faith my friends showed despite the difficulties they were going thru, the more I listened to how God was working in their lives, the more grateful I became.

I recorded in my journal some of the thoughts that had encouraged us to choose God than our circumstances:

“God wants us to be close to Him, so much that he will allow difficult times just to hold us.” -SR

“We should not look for the reasons why things are happening the way they are, instead, run to God and seek his face.” -JG

“God is so gracious that even in our doubts, he works in us.”

“We do not know what tomorrow brings, but we know who holds tomorrow”.

I learned to value our friendship in a greater way. I began to reach out and pray for them in a daily basis. Unlike before that, we would organise a date to catch up or think about each other in our prayers when needed. I would say that we became much closer because of COVID19.

How about you Church, what are the relationships that grew in your life at this season?