By Nancy Virden (c)2020
Focus on the news and social media is unnerving at best. There is much uncertainty in the world. Who is the source of “breaking news?” Is everything as bad as scientists predict? What motives are behind conspiracy theories? Who can I trust!?
Life has always been full of struggles. Despite this unexpected, life-changing pandemic, we want peace, joy, and hope. Upon losing sight of those, anxiety, and symptoms of depression may threaten to undo our ability to function well.
The difficulty: “truth” is always changing
News outlets and social media have little to offer by way of uplifting information. This is why avoiding both as much as possible is healthy. We need to know what is happening in the world, only we do not need all the details and guesses.
- Given that everyone is using whatever means to grab for our attention, avoiding traps of titillating headlines and videos will help us to feel better.
- Ignore anything and everything that sounds like a far-fetched theory. The number one clue to recognizing a conspiracy is the idea that many people could keep a secret for a few days, let alone over spans of years. It makes no sense. Also, when a so-called clue is challenged, a more complicated explanation will arise. Truth tends to be simple.
- In time, what is true will prove itself. We gain nothing by worrying about it now. The facts about this coronavirus will rise to the top; let it ride. We do not control outcomes, so let’s focus on what we do control at the moment.
Real truth does not change
In the middle of confusion, there are a handful of truths that do not change. The Bible is where God’s promises are in writing. Misquotes and additions to what God has said only complicate faith. Like truth, faith is simple. So why not go to the source and get it right?
Psalm 33:4 – For the word of the Lord holds true, and we can trust everything he does.
God’s promises often come with conditions. In Psalm 91:1 we read one example.
- Condition: Those who dwell in the shelter of the Most High…
- Promise: will REST in the shadow of the Almighty.
Rest sounds a lot like peace, joy, and hope. This passage goes on to assure us that we can have those today by making a choice.
Number 4 is no quick-fix
At times I have needed extra help and God has kindly led me to the right persons. Practicing honesty with ourselves, God, and one other human is how our burdens are lifted.
Psalm 91:2,5,6 – This I declare about the Lord: He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; he is my God, and I trust him… Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night, nor the arrow that flies in the day. Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness, nor the disaster that strikes at midday…”
Will we declare this about the Lord? Will we trust him? Yes, my peace is threatened too. By keeping my head wrapped around who my Savior is, negative what-ifs do not hold my attention.
Today’s Helpful Word
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
Always the Fight Ministries (ATFM) has been displaying compassion for those fighting mental illness, addiction, or abuse since 2012. Nancy is the founder and voice of ATFM and openly shares her emotional resurrection from despair.
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NOTE: I am not a doctor or a mental health professional, and speak only from personal experiences and observations. In no way is this website intended to substitute for professional mental or behavioral health care.
If you are feeling suicidal, or concerned about someone who is, in the U.S. call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 1-800-273-TALK (8255), or for a list of international suicide hotlines, go here.
If you are suicidal with a plan, immediately call 911 in the U.S. or go to your nearest emergency room. In the EU call 112. (For other international emergency numbers, go here ). Hope and help are yours!
*Unless otherwise indicated, Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright (c) 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc.., Carlo Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved