August 2020

Has the world gone mad? Is everyone crazy? Have you wondered that when you walk into a store and no one is wearing a mask? Have you wondered that when you see people acting as if the COVID virus does not exist? Or maybe it was when a friend or relative told you about the latest conspiracy theory. Maybe it is scenes of protests turned into riots. You read one thing then a neighbor says just the opposite. There seems to be as much disinformation out there as information. It is enough to drive you mad.

Are you getting worked up about what you are watching and hearing and reading? Pay attention to that. Reliable information is usually just that, information. If you are feeling anxious, angry, hopeless, agitated, etc. then you are probably digesting more than just information. Someone may be trying to manipulate you. Pay attention to your emotions. Pay attention to your body, your physical response.

When we are faced with uncertainty we search for answers, predictions, anything, in the hope that it will provide us with some sense of certainty. But, as you may have experienced, if you have the free time to spend hours in front of a screen digesting news and videos and the latest information and the 10 Things You Need to know about whatever, it does not make you feel more sure. In our search for certainty we end up feeling lost, depressed, unmoored.

Jesus did not promise his disciples certainty. He gave them the gift of faith. Faith does not demand certainty. Faith gives us the ability to deal with ambiguity and uncertainty because we trust that God has our back and even as we experience hardship and trauma, we also trust that God will use that to bring us blessing.

As the old Sunday School song says, “Oh be careful little eyes what you see...” Instead of seeking certainty, practice faith. Instead of doing what makes you agitated, do what gives you peace. Or as the apostle Paul wrote in Romans 12:2 Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God – what is good and acceptable and perfect. Why? So that you can be a servant to those in need and not overwhelmed by what is going on around you.

So, I continue to pray for you, and I hope you pray for me, for our minds to be renewed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Pr. Bob Albing

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