virus suits webThe big news for 2020 is the pandemic caused by COVID-19, the somewhat gentler term for the coronavirus. This deadly virus has grabbed the headlines from the presidential race, foreign threats, celebrity hijinks, and just about every other newsworthy event. We are saturated with contradictory articles and tweets and posts and murmurs and find it hard to know who or what to believe. It’s very Orwellian when you walk into a market to buy flowers and hear over the PA system, while standing 6 feet apart, wearing a creepy mask, “Attention customers! You must maintain social distancing. Wash your hands for 20 seconds. Wear a mask. Do not touch anything. Don’t go near the cashier; just toss your wallet over the plexiglass germ shield.”

These are scary times, not to be taken lightly. People are seeking truth and escape from the dark clouds of fear.
What we fill our mind with will determine our attitude and outlook. A mask won’t prevent us from inhaling or spreading fear and gloom. We can obsess over the unknown or look for avenues of peace and the distraction of hope.

If we can get our eyes off the TV and blogs, we can look upward and inward to find truth and hope that are unaffected by microscopic particles and massive protests. Psalm 19, written by King David almost 3,000 years ago, can fill our minds with the peace and hope we long for.

This psalm can be read in three sections. Section 1, Verses 1–6, points us to God’s revelation of himself in nature: “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork” (v. 1).
Section 2, Verses 7–11, proclaims the virtues of God’s word, the bible: “The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul” (v. 7).
Section 3, Verses 12–14, reflects on the personal reaction to the contemplation of God’s creation and writings: “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my rock and my redeemer” (v. 14).
Contemplating the grand layout of God’s universe, its vast, unchanging nature, shows his power and care for all he has made. The silent voice of his power and love drowns out the shouts of hopelessness and fear we hear every day.

The words of men change and fail continuously, but the Words of God never change and bring great reward — They guard and cleanse body and soul.

The power of God and purpose of his words lead us to look inwardly at the disease of sin that ravages all of us, for which there is only one cure: “But [Jesus Christ] was pierced for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his wounds we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5).

When fearful, look to the heavens, look to the bible, and look within. There, you will find peace and perspective.

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