Just Janice - October 2020
Well, I think the Pandemic is taking the place of just about all we talk about! Are you getting tired of it? If wishing could make it disappear, it would be long gone. This whole thing has had me pondering a lot lately. Exactly what is the Christian response to the Pandemic and Covid-19? The bible consistently says “be not afraid”, but these are scary times with no end in sight. Does it seem to you that our wonderful country is falling apart? I have a suggestion, and folks, that’s all it is – a suggestion but it seems to be working for me.
My suggestion is to take a break from watching too much news on TV and/or the internet. The important events will be there even if we miss “breaking news”. Now, why on earth would your pastor be giving unsolicited advice like this? It’s because I talk to people who are depressed, stressed, and generally upset by all the things that are going on. Can you honestly say you’re not affected? I have limited my “news watching” and I can tell you for certain, it has helped me a great deal. I communicate on various social media outlets with other pastors and clergy friends and they are experiencing the same thing. Many of their congregants [including themselves] are stressed to an unhealthy level and it seems most are realizing it’s caused by information overload. I challenge you to give yourself a hiatus from watching/listening to too much negativity [e.g. 24/7 news].
As you know, I’m on Facebook a lot and when I find myself drawn in to reading negative posts and getting stressed, I stop reading them. And please hold me accountable to what I post. I try to be positive, funny, upbeat, inspirational, and encouraging. Plus, I love staying in contact with friends who are local and others around the world. We just need to be careful what we focus on. I’m kind of a fanatic about this. What should we focus on? Prayer – always [prayer list, prayer person of the week, prayer church of the month], Word of the Month, scriptures, etc. This is very Biblical; Philippians 4:8 tells us what we should think on.
There are SO many ways to put positivity in our lives. Want positive emails to greet you every day? Let me know, I get several. Begin weeding out things that put you in a bad mood or are depressing – many, many posts on social media are inspiring. Humor is a GREAT replacement for negativity. I’ve found some new places that make me laugh out loud and are just adorable. Some involve pets, some children, some just funny things that people say and do – I’ll gladly share.
I guess what I am suggesting is that we make a conscious effort to balance negative information with things that are positive and uplifting. Try it, and let me know if it makes a difference.
And even though we can’t meet face to face, I continue to be so happy to be your pastor!
till next time …