As businesses begin to reopen and we all think about leaving our houses for the first time in months, it’s easy to forget the massive impact the Coronavirus pandemic has had on other countries around the world. In many areas, the virus continues to spread and prevent people from returning to their normal lives.
In Peru, for example, residents are still unable to leave their homes after 5pm. They’re restricted to only buying food and other necessities on certain days throughout the week and most have been unable to work for over 30 days. Furthermore, most houses in rural Peru are not equipped with the tools needed to prepare meals during the quarantine. These extended quarantines have left a massive burden on lower-income communities in Peru and few resources are available to help them during the COVID-19 crisis.
Tim and Holly Anderson, local missionaries with Equip International, saw the needs of the people in their neighborhoods. Tim explained, “I was in line at the grocery store and saw a soldier pull an older gentleman out of line. The soldier told him he was not allowed to go into the marketplace because he was older and more prone to the virus.” Together, they decided to go to the Lord in prayer and fasting to ask God what it would look like for them to be faithful during this time.
While fasting, Tim and Holly felt led to a passage in Isaiah 58. In the verse, God is disciplining His people for fasting with the purpose of gaining favor and compliments from others.
“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter— when you see the naked, to clothe them, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?” -Isaiah 58:6-7
Tim and Holly came to the realization that if they wanted to fast the way the Lord had called them, they needed to work to help the struggling families of Peru.
The Andersons began raising funds through Equip International to deliver food and basic needs to their local communities. While making deliveries, they’ve seen what Isaiah 58 was really talking about. “This is Kingdom,” Tim said. “We prayed over elderly, sick folks in their homes and beds for healing. God is working, but we can’t do it alone.” As more funds come in, Tim and Holly hope to deliver more food and basic needs across Peru and spread the love of Jesus with everyone they meet.
The Coronavirus pandemic has taught us all to depend on God to provide. As we pray and fast during this time, remember the words Tim and Holly read in Isaiah 58. We have been called to free the oppressed and provide for those in need.
You can support families in Peru by getting involved with the Anderson’s at Equip International HERE