My wife and I went for a hike yesterday, one of the blessings of living in the midst of the mountains, and were discussing all the news about the pandemic in which we all are currently living. Then, suddenly, she said, “Let’s talk about something positive.”
It is easy to allow ourselves to be inundated with pandemic news, with very little, if any, of it being good or encouraging. As I told my wife after she requested a change of subject, a doctor I heard on an NPR report advised people to take a break from the news and find other, more uplifting things to do and think about. This really follows the counsel of the Apostle Paul to the Philippians:
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. (Philippians 4:8)
And we should remember that at the time he wrote this, Paul was in a Roman prison and the Christians throughout the Roman Empire were suffering persecution. They were in the midst of difficult times.
So, on this Lord’s Day, I think it would be helpful and encouraging to focus on other things besides the pandemic, things that are true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable, excellent, and praiseworthy. Of course, each of our lives are different and we are not all having the same experience, but I believe there are blessings to be found in these unsettled times no matter our individual circumstances.
As I sit here on my couch, here are some of mine:
- The bird songs that greet me every morning.
- The signs of spring all around me—the daffodils blooming, trees flowering, forsythia exploding in waves of yellow throughout my neighborhood.
- A home in which to live; plenty of food to eat and coffee to drink.
- A wife with whom to share social isolation.
- Technology through which to communicate with others.
- Witnessing in the midst of turmoil and uncertainty acts of kindness and compassion.
- Having a relationship with the Lord,
-who is my salvation (Psalm 62:1-2)
-who is a refuge for me (Psalm 91:1-4)
-who is faithful in his provision for me no matter my circumstances (Matthew 6:31-33)
-who can give me peace and calm in the midst of the storms of life (John 16:33)
These are some of the blessings I am choosing to think about today rather than all the pandemic news. How about you? What blessings are there in your life on which you can focus today?
© Jim Musser 2020 All Scripture references are from the New International Version 2011.