Each day we know that death and disaster occur, it is everywhere. Rarely have I seen a the cover of a newspaper portraying something wonderful that happened in our world. Often times we are raised into a negative mindset without really realizing it, however, that is not how we as Believers are to live.
6- In nothing be anxious; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.
7- And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall guard your hearts and your thoughts in Christ Jesus.
8- Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, honorable, just, pure, lovely, of a good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.
Paul wrote these words while in a prison, waiting once again for man to try and stop him from preaching the Gospel of Christ. Paul faced so many things that I cannot even imagine encountering myself, yet he never lost the joy of the Lord. He guarded his joy, and as a result he continued to minister after he wrote Philippians.
Here’s what I am saying: we cannot become so consumed by the tragedy that we lose sight of the hope. Of course terrible things happen, but we know that we are not of earth but heaven. (John 8:23) As Christians we have an eternal hope in Christ, but the world as a whole does not live like this. What a testimony it is when everything is upside down, that we as Christians have peace and share our hope with the world. From the gas station to the pulpit, our lives are to be a living example of the things that Jesus imparted into us. Events that have recently occurred around the world have the majority of society in a chaotic state, that is when Jesus is needed most.
It has been statistically proven that after a large traumatic event, people return to the faith they have been influenced by, no matter the amount of long term dedication to it. After 9/11 for instance, people flocked to the comfort of their faith and church attendance nation wide went up 20%. Since 2003, it has declined dramatically. As the world mourns for the lost it would be wrong for us to simply watch the pain from a TV screen and stay where we are. I’m not saying that everyone needs to get on a plane and go to Paris or Japan. What I am saying is that actively participating in sending someone, praying for the nation with dedication or finding ways to help materially no matter the path we cannot ignore the lives effected.
If we allow ourselves to become numb with the continuously flowing bad news and tragic images, we harden the most tender part of ourselves. It is our love for people. In these end times horrible events will continue to occur, but this is also a grand opportunity for us to share the Gospel and save as many souls as possible! People around the world are showing support for the nations effected by tragedy, so what more can the Church do? That is a question I believe you know within you.
-Carissa Raye Todd