Something just caught my eye. Something both at once nervously telling of the times we’re living in, but also admiringly on-trend. While researching options for backing up my hard-drive to an online server I read on one website, ‘because it is offsite backup, it can survive any major disasters‘. Major disasters? Curious, I clicked on a further link which took me to a page introduced by the words ‘your data is always safe, no matter what happens to you or your office. Earthquake, hurricane, disk crash, virus, laptop theft, accidental deletion, or fire? No problem, your data is insured!‘. Truthfully I don’t know what to be more amazed by: the fear being pumped to us by seemingly every channel available or the company’s swift marketing strategy jumping on that fear and making it a unique selling point!
It got me thinking about the thousands, possibly millions of people who are literally buying into all kinds of security measures, in response to an ever rising climate of fear. It’s true, in the last few years we’ve seen staggering natural disaters, all over the world, and the recent devastation in the US from tornados and hurricanes has made many feel a lot less sure about being geographically safe from harm.
Just a couple of weeks back, in a Walmart in Arizona with my Mom-in-law we stood open-mouthed in an aisle dedicated to ‘Emergency Food’. Bulk dried food in huge cans and bags- the kind you’d see on the news at disaster scenes, being dished out to people who’ve lost their homes and loved ones and are barely clinging on to the brink of survival. Yet here we were in a Walmart, surrounded by food, being sold emergency food as if there was no food?! We had to ask ourselves what is going on with the state of mind in our western culture? As people hoard food and pack emergency backpacks while living one of the plushest lifestyles you can live on this planet. Something is surely very wrong with how we are functioning- and companies are loving it.
It’s often said that fear and faith are essentially the same thing; a belief that something, although unseen, exists or will happen. It’s sad that so many are being led by fear in these days, many Christians even. The Bible makes it clear that this world was never meant to live forever, so we mustn’t cling to it like it is. Yes we prepare, but not in this panic-driven way. We prepare by making sure those around us know where they will spend their eternity. Eternity is coming. We don’t know when, although some will claim otherwise, but it is coming and so we must ready ourselves for that. How? By holding fast to the truth given to us in God’s Word, ‘Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.’ Romans 12:21 NKJV and by remembering that ‘He who is in us is greater than he who is in the world.’ 1 John 4:4 NKJV. It’s Jesus who will enable us to be consumed with hope, and not fear. And Jesus who will provide for our needs, just as He always has, in or out of a disaster.