So how are your Coronavirus sensitivity levels faring? Responsibly handwashing, keeping body fluids to yourself & encouraging others to do the same, without jumping onto the panic bandwagon? Yesterday in church we encouraged everyone to give fist-bumps, elbow-knocks or foot-taps instead of handshakes, hugs or kisses. A few blown kisses & laughs allowed some to release tension, while others raised eyes as if to say “What a lot of nonsense!” The person who invented sanitising gel must be rubbing his hands.
We live in an age of anxiety, when news about the Coronavirus threat spreads faster than concern over the deadliest killers of our day (Heart disease, Cancer, Accidents, Chronic lower respiratory diseases, Strokes, Alzheimer’s disease, Diabetes, Influenza & pneumonia, Intentional self-harm, etc). There are lots of scary threats to our health & wellbeing to be taken
seriously, but what can act as an antidote to the irrational overthinking & paranoia which all too easily turn us humans into fear-factories?
“Exchange your overthinking for overwhelming peace that says, ‘I can be okay without knowing everything.’”Says MH Nichols. What can encourage us towards trusting such Overwhelming Peace, able to displace worry, anxiety & fear? The Gift of Faith in The One Who does know all things and loves us always.
“With God on our side like this, how can we lose? If God didn’t hesitate to put everything on the line for us, embracing our condition and exposing himself to the worst by sending his own Son, is there anything else he wouldn’t gladly and freely do for us? And who would dare tangle with God by messing with one of God’s chosen? Who would dare even to point a finger? The One who died for us—who was raised to life for us!—is in the presence of God at this very moment sticking up for us. Do you think anyone is going to be able to drive a wedge between us and Christ’s love for us? There is no way! Not trouble, not hard times, not hatred, not hunger, not homelessness, not bullying threats, (not Coronavirus) not backstabbing, not even the worst sins listed in Scripture… None of this fazes us because Jesus loves us. I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable—absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.” (Romans 8:31-39 / MSG)
Jesus stood among his fearful friends. They were behind locked doors scared they’d be next to be strung up like Jesus. Jesus breathed his calm into them, as if to say, ‘I’m still in charge, everything’s going to be ok!’ Then he commissioned them to pass this ‘peace which passes all understanding’ to all they met. So, we are called to be carriers of the most potent infection of all time ‘The Love of Christ’. Breathe in Breathe Out, Breathe in Breathe Out, Breathe in Breathe Out!