Tomorrow marks one year of living in Italy. Who would have guessed that I would spend it locked inside, allowed out only to get groceries?
The whole country of Italy has come to a halt. The government is doing a great job of taking necessary measures and encouraging people to hang on just a little longer because “Insieme ce la faremo" (together we will make it)!
It is an invisible enemy, as Italian Premier Conte reminded us, and we have to be very careful. During this time, people are turning to each other or all kinds of things to find hope and solutions. People are fearful and hardly even dare to greet anyone in the street. It makes my heart sad to see so many people searching and being led astray. This country needs Jesus!
Even though most of society has come to a standstill, the beautiful thing is that my role in sharing the good news has taken an important and creative turn. People are spending hours online these days and that provides a great opportunity to share the love of Christ.
For example, I’m in a WhatsApp group from a macramè course I took. Mostly made up of older ladies who are in the high-risk category, some have been sharing tips on how to protect yourself and alternative ways to beat the virus like ‘pray 10 Ave Maria’s’ or ‘visualize a red light containing the virus’ and so on. I felt led to share some true hope by sending the group a piece of art I made illustrating Matthew 6:25-34 along with the verses. Several women were encouraged and thanked me for sharing.
You can share the gospel in innovative ways too. Make a video explaining the gospel in a creative way, paint Bible verses, write your own Psalm, share hopeful notes to the neighbours in your building and, above all, pray. Pray when you meet your friends online, pray with the church, pray over your city map and pray for the world.
Spiritual breakthroughs are happening. For the first time in Italian history, different evangelical denominations joined together online for a day of prayer. The Billy Graham Society started an evangelistic campaign on national television where people can call in with questions and be ministered to and prayed for by volunteers. Amazing!
God keeps reminding me: “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden,” –– Matthew 5:14 (NKJV) (my emphasis). There is no place where the light shines brighter than in the darkness.
How are you being a light?
*Since this post was written, lockdown restrictions in Italy have eased
Christine has a passion for teaching, art and bringing light and hope into people's lives through effective communication in any form. With OM since 2016, she spent two years serving in her home country, the Netherlands, before joining the four-month artist training Incarnate in 2018 as a singer. God put Italy on her heart and, in 2019, she moved there to serve long term.