I believe that we have all likely experienced a situation where we were in the presence of parents that have children that just seem to be out-of-control. You might be visiting in their home or they in yours. You might be in a restaurant or a retail setting. But as you watch those children run willy-nilly around like wild heathens you have to wonder who is really in control? Children grab at things and selfishly will not share – maybe even turning their backs on others, holding on to what they want. It appears that the parents have relegated everything over to these little people that have no life experience yet seem to be running the show.
As we look around us today in our unsettled world, it is almost like the entire population is behaving like those undisciplined children. People have gone to stores grabbing at things they want, but in quantities far above what they really need possibly denying someone else in dire need of that item to have it. You can go online and see videos of people fighting and screaming at one another over toilet paper. One I saw had a lady with a basket overflowing with multiple large packages while another is saying “But I only want ONE!” as the other practically lays across her basket to protect her load. We may chuckle at the “insanity” of it; but it is a sad thing when you really think about.
What causes normally sensible adults to react and behave the way we see today? I believe it comes from fear, anxiety and worry. I can understand that, I really can. We have something new among us – something that threatens to take many lives. We have intelligent, highly informed professionals that have given us guidelines for our own protection. Yet you will still see many people nonchalantly going about their lives ignoring what has been recommended for us all.
You have people that spout conspiracy theories – which may or may not be possible, instilling fear and concern. You have people that want to deny there is really a problem at all because there are other things that cause more deaths and no big deal is made about that. You have young adults that believe they are invincible and that because their age group is less likely to get the virus they gather in large groups on beaches to party, ignoring the fact that although they may not get sick themselves, they could carry the germs home and spread them to their own parents or grandparents. It is all about me, me, me.
On the other hand, you will hear stories about how a group of four 20 somethings in New York formed a group (Invisible Hands) that quickly grew to 5000 volunteers in a week. They deliver needed supplies to the elderly and others in need of help during this virus outbreak. We hear stories of our brave first responders – especially those in the medical field – that are the front line for us all trying to care for those that need medical help. They struggle with the lack of necessary supplies that will help to keep themselves healthy, all while continuing to serve others. Do you sincerely believe that all these heroic people do not struggle with the same fears, anxieties and worries facing us all? Yet they move forward and do what they are called to do.
How can we all put our fears, anxieties and worries aside and move forward in these uncertain times? With FAITH.
We should have faith in ourselves to make wise decisions and protect ourselves and the ones we love by behaving like unselfish, sane, mature adults.
We should have faith in the people that have the expertise that are attempting to help and direct us. They are not perfect people – they will make mistakes and they may say things that may later be proven to be incorrect. But the unusual circumstances we are in is going to have a learning curve – even for the experts – so we need to give them some leeway as they do their best.
But most of all, we need to have faith in God. He is still in control. From the beginning of time people have had to go through hard times. Sometimes they created the situation themselves and had to suffer the consequences. Other times the difficulties may have been allowed by God in order to teach them something and to help them come out the other side better and stronger.
I have from the beginning of this ordeal refused to be fearful or worry about it. Of course, I have felt some concerns, and still do with some aspects of it; but I just believe that when we come out the other side of this, we are going to be better because of it. There are always lessons to be learned if we will just be alert and open to them. In the meantime, read God’s word and spend time in prayer every day praying for those that have fallen ill, those that are working to protect and help us, the leaders of not only our nation but all over the world. We must stop using words like “scary”, “afraid”, “ruined”, and in a negative connotation “never” and “always”. Think and/or speak positive words to yourself and others. Get that dusty Bible down off the shelf and read scriptures that talk about peace, joy, comfort, strength, etc.
If you feel the fear creeping into your mind, just stop, take a deep breath and think about some of these scriptures:
Joshua 1:9 (TLB) “Yes, be bold and strong! Banish fear and doubt! For remember, the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
Psalm 56:3 (NIV) “When I am afraid, I put my trust in You.”
Psalm 94:19 (TLB) “Lord, when doubts fill my mind, when my heart is in turmoil, quiet me and give me renewed hope and cheer.”
Psalm 46:1-7 (TLB) “God is our refuge and strength, a tested help in times of trouble. And so we need not fear even if the world blows up and the mountains crumble into the sea. Let the oceans roar and foam; let the mountains tremble! There is a river of joy flowing through the city of our God – the sacred home of the God above all gods. God himself is living in that city; therefore it stands unmoved despite the turmoil everywhere. He will not delay his help. The nations rant and rave in anger – but when God speaks, the earth melts in submission and kingdoms totter into ruin. The Commander of the armies of heaven is here among us. He, the God of Jacob, has come to rescue us.”
Romans 12:12 (TLB) “Be glad for all God is planning for you. Be patient in trouble, and prayerful always.”
Isaiah 35:4 (TLB) “Encourage those who are afraid. Tell them, “Be strong, fear not, for your God is coming to destroy your enemies. He is coming to save you.”
John 16:33 (TLB) “I have told you all this so that you will have peace of heart and mind. Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows; but cheer up, for I have overcome the world.”
Do not let the darkness of fear take over your life and control you. Do not worry about things that may or may not happen. Philippians 8:4 (TLB) “And now, brothers, as I close this letter, let me say this one more thing: Fix your thoughts on what is true and good and right. Think about things that are pure and lovely, and dwell on the fine, good things in others. Think about all you can praise God for and be glad about.”
Most importantly remember this – GOD is in control!
Written by Karran Martin – March 24, 2020