Greg Laurie, pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in southern California is calling Americans to pray for an end to the spread of coronavirus and to calm fears over the outbreak.
“There’s a lot of panic. In some ways, I think the viral fear about it may be worse than the virus itself,” Laurie said in a video posted on Instagram.
“The Bible tells us, don’t worry about it – pray about it. Don’t worry about anything. God is bigger than the coronavirus,” he added.
Laurie is urging the nation to focus on three key items relating to COVID-19:
1. Be Practical about hygiene habits
2. Pray for God’s protection over the nation
3. Proclaim the gospel
The pastor wrote that we should follow advice from medical professionals, but continue to pray for God’s protection.
“Listen to the medical experts and take appropriate measures (Wash your hands, etc.) But we need to replace our fear with faith and pray for our nation, that God would protect us.”
Scott James, a pediatric infectious disease specialist in Alabama said fear of the unknown is a common theme he continues to see with the coronavirus.
“One thing that does cause me some concern is the general tendency to focus on the unknowns in a way that stokes panic and fear,” James said. “Instead of fretting over potential catastrophes, pay attention to the opportunities that are right in front of you: take care of yourself, take care of others, and do your part to limit the spread of disease.”
James encourages Christians to consider possible pandemics with preparedness and having a biblical perspective with the situation.
“Preparedness simply means we will seek to inform ourselves of the situation and to make responsible choices for our own good and for the good of our communities.”
He said to maintain a “biblical perspective based on the understanding that no matter what threat is on the horizon, God is still in control. Trusting in God equips us to take the threat seriously without giving into panic or despair.”