Covid-19 vs Good News

Maybe it’s because this virus invaded before the warmth of the sun began to resurrect our corner of the planet, but it feels like since its arrival the sky has been grey and the news has been dark. Daily updates of new cases bring more dire predictions and a bleaker economic outlook. It’s hard to find good news these days.

I wonder: Why do we have to search for news about those who have recovered, while the news about those infected jumps off our screen? Why do we find the about those whose cases have been physically distressing but the ones about the quick recoveries are buried? Why is news of a potentially powerful treatment on the 8th page of the paper instead of on the 1st?

The charitable interpretation is that the initial response by those in authority was slow enough to necessitate dire predictions. A fire needed to be lit, and it needed to be lit with gasoline. Fair enough. But people are not made only of atoms and molecules. They are also made of thoughts, hopes, desires, fears, affections, loves, and dreams. These, too, must be cared for.

Enter Christianity. Hope beyond the circumstances, where the sun is always shining behind the clouds. We must be of good cheer. In the world we will have tribulation, like famines and floods, persecutions and piracy, or viruses. But Jesus has overcome the world (John 16:33) so that we might have peace. Peace that is not an absence of tribulation, but peace that ultimately overcomes the tribulation. Peace when the food pantry is running low, because Jesus is the Bread of Life. Peace when the bottles of water are all gone because Jesus is the Water that quenches all thirst. Peace when the lights are dim, because Jesus is the Light of Life. Peace next to the bedside of a dying friend, because Jesus is the Resurrection.

This is good news despite our mood. Good news that denies our despair. Good news that corrects our worldly astigmatism. We face our darkest fears (much less our daily fears!) armed with hearts full of good news.

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