MEGAN BASHAM, HOST: Today is Thursday, March 19th. Good morning! This is The World and Everything in It from listener-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Megan Basham.
NICK EICHER, HOST: And I’m Nick Eicher. Commentator Cal Thomas now on the chance we all have to refocus our priorities.
CAL THOMAS, COMMENTATOR: Some years ago, I wrote a book titled The Things That Matter Most. It was a critique of the continuing impact the 1960s generation has had on the country.
The coronavirus pandemic, too, offers us an opportunity to consider what matters most—both in our nation and individual lives.
Authorities say to stay indoors, not travel, and avoid crowds of more than 10 people. Scores must now work from home. Some are being laid off or have had their hours reduced.
With no sports, entertainment seems limited to the few things worth watching on TV.
Rather than lament this—and there is plenty to lament—how about seeing it as an opportunity? During Lent, some people give up certain things to practice self-discipline and demonstrate their devotion to God.
Now, there is a big difference between voluntarily giving up something and being forced to do so—and also a difference between a religious practice and an infectious virus. But the principle remains the same.
What are you now giving up that you could do without? Put another way, what are you now focusing on that did not get your attention before the coronavirus?
Being forced to stay indoors and spend more time with your spouse and kids offers an opportunity, not a burden. Maybe you are a workaholic who has made money your primary goal in life. Could God be offering you a chance to re-order your priorities?
If you crave status, does that matter as much while you focus on hand washing and other virus-preventive measures? How often did you even think about washing your hands before the virus?
Last Sunday President Trump called for the nation to pray that God might remove the threat of the coronavirus and protect us from it. This brings to mind President Franklin Roosevelt’s call to prayer on D-Day in 1944. Like today, he knew the power of government was insufficient to overcome such a serious challenge.
Could this present a similar opportunity for those so inclined to seek a closer relationship with the God who made us?
Last question. When the virus is no longer a threat, will you return to your old ways? Will you again focus on money, things, status and work, or has this virus taught you a lesson about what matters most for you, your family and the nation?
As pastor Lon Solomon likes to say: “Not a sermon, just a thought.”
I’m Cal Thomas.