Maintaining a good news culture in a time of worldwide panic

Maintaining a good news culture in a time of worldwide panic

Maintaining a good news culture in a time of worldwide panic

by Dave Carter
25th March 2020

I must admit I do love a good meme. Anything that can make me laugh at a familiar subject is always  enjoyable. My social media accounts generally give me a steady diet of memes and dad jokes to help me through the day.

Currently pretty much every post I come across is devoted to one theme: The coronavirus, COVID 19, and the devastation it is causing. I would suggest there is a secondary theme to the images and entries I come across, which is commenting on how bad 2020 has been, and that we should consider cancelling it entirely and move on to 2021 already.

How do we maintain hope when the news seems overwhelmingly negative? What state are our minds in when every day we’re bombarded by death statistics, economic collapse and the thought that things may get worse?

One school of thought has tended to be that we should try and be less aware of the negative news. I’ve never really bought in to this approach, as it just feels like sticking your head in the sand and ignoring what’s going on around us. I don’t think Jesus operated this way. In Luke 13, when Jesus was told about a recent horrific event, he didn’t stick his fingers in his ears and shout “not listening!” In fact he brings up the subject of another recent tragedy, showing he was aware of current events and not afraid to discuss difficult circumstances.1

I don’t think we’re ever called to be ignorant of what is going on, but I believe we are instructed on being responsible for the state of our thinking. We can be aware of the problems going on whilst still allowing Holy Spirit to govern our minds. Fix your minds on what is excellent or praiseworthy….2

We’re aware of the difficulties around us, we need to be compassionate to those who are struggling. But we choose what our mind dwells on, and we allow the goodness of God to be transformative in our thinking.

At our GP practice meeting the other day, we acknowledged that we’re dealing with pressure on the health service unlike anything we’ve ever seen. Yet we chose to celebrate the local taxi firm which has offered to deliver food and medicine to local housebound people for free.

Amongst stories of restaurants closing, the news of an anonymous customer leaving a $2500 tip to be split among the staff as they were closing down should inspire us with the potential for people to be generous in these times.3

Choose to find the positive stories amongst what is going on. Also, trust that in this season we will continue to see God provide in abundance out of his generosity, that we will see miraculous provision, protection and lives transformed by His love.

May I encourage you to prioritise sharing the good news of what God is doing in your lives over the coming weeks and months. Meet online, set up messaging groups with your connect group, post positive stories on social media. Help one another to see the goodness of God working through all things.

We never deny reality. We just acknowledge a greater reality.

Ref

  • Luke 13 v 1 – 5
  • Philippians 4 v 8
  • goodnewsnetwork.org