The World and Everything in It — March 31, 2020


MARY REICHARD, HOST: Good morning!

Ordinary Americans are using social media and needle and thread to help meet the demand for face masks. 

NICK EICHER, HOST: Also restaurants. These businesses are the social part of the food industry. Today, a story on how they’re dealing with the new normal. 

Plus, a working mom who now has to add unexpected homeschooling to her juggling act.

REICHARD: It’s Tuesday, March 31st. This is The World and Everything in It from listener-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Mary Reichard.

EICHER: And I’m Nick Eicher. Good morning!

REICHARD: Now the news. Here’s Kent Covington.


KENT COVINGTON, NEWS ANCHOR: Cuomo pleads for help has NY death toll mounts » New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is putting out an urgent plea for medical volunteers as the deaths in his state continue to mount. 

CUOMO: I am asking healthcare professionals across the country, if you don’t have a healthcare crisis in your community, please come help us in New York now. 

His plea comes as the death toll in New York climbed past 1,200 on Monday—with most of those victims in New York City.

Cuomo also expressed his gratitude as a 1,000-bed Navy hospital ship pulled into a Manhattan port yesterday. He said it’s like adding another hospital in the city. 

Meantime, other major cities have seen a surge in coronavirus cases, including Chicago, Detroit, and New Orleans. Louisiana Senator Bill Cassidy warned this week that hospitals are nearly at capacity. Officials are now turning the New Orleans convention center into a coronavirus recovery center. And healthcare workers are feeling the strain as well.

Thomas Krajewski is an emergency room physician just outside New Orleans. He’s seen many patients check into the hospital hoping to get better…

KRAJEWSKI: And instead they have gotten worse while they’ve been in the hospital. And in fact, many of them have passed away already in a way that’s … [chokes up] it’s not normal. 

Louisiana has a stay-at-home order in place. And this week, Virginia, Maryland, and Washington D.C. also issued stay-at-home orders. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis on Monday issued a stay-home order for the southern portion of his state.

U.S. has now tested more than a million people for coronavirus » Speaking in the White House Rose Garden Monday, President Trump announced a coronavirus testing milestone. 

TRUMP: Over 1 million Americans have now been tested, more than any other country by far. 

Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said U.S. healthcare workers are now testing more than 100,000 samples per day. And the administrator of the Food and Drug Administration, Stephen Hahn, said many more patients will soon get their test results in a matter of minutes. He said the government has approved new COVID-19 point-of-care tests, which allow patients to get results before they leave the doctor’s office or any other testing site.

HAHN: Just like tests for flu or strep where you go to the doctor and get the test done, you can get results within minutes of having this test done.

The FDA has also approved N95 mask sterilization kits that will allow healthcare workers to reuse masks up to 20 times. Sterilization machines will soon ship to more than a half-dozen cities.

Retailers to furlough hundreds of thousands of workers » Macy’s, Kohl’s and The Gap all announced furloughs on Monday that will collectively impact hundreds of thousands of workers.

Macy’s will stop paying 125,000 employees this week after temporarily closing more than 600 stores earlier this month. Kohl’s will furlough 85,000 employees. And a Gap spokesman said its furloughs will affect nearly 80,000 people.

Some Amazon, Instacart workers walk out » Meanwhile, some Instacart and Amazon warehouse workers walked off the job Monday, demanding stronger safety measures against the coronavirus. WORLD’s Kristen Flavin has more. 

KRISTEN FLAVIN, REPORTER: The one-day strikes didn’t have much of an impact on consumers, but they called attention to mounting worries from workers on the front lines—serving the needs of millions now working from home. 

And a worker’s group for Whole Foods employees is calling for a nationwide —quote—“sick out” tomorrow. 

Online grocery-delivery service Instacart and Amazon say they are working to equip their employees with sanitation gear and have taken steps to increase pay and extend paid sick time. Instacart also outlined changes to its tip system, but strikers said it was too little too late. Some are demanding hazard pay. 

But organized walk-offs may not gain much traction with so many people applying for new jobs as layoffs surge in restaurants, retail, hospitality, and other industries. Nearly 3.3 million Americans applied for unemployment benefits last week.

Reporting for WORLD, I’m Kristen Flavin.

Moscow on lockdown after Russia closes borders » After Russia temporarily closed its borders nationwide, Moscow is now on lockdown—obliging most of its 13 million residents to stay home. Many other regions of the country quickly followed suit. And the government is reportedly considering a nationwide lockdown. 

Today, the Russian parliament is scheduled to approve a bill that imposes prison terms of up to seven years and steep fines for violators.

Coronavirus cases are on the rise in Russia. The country has reported fewer than 2,000 confirmed cases, but U.S. officials have cast doubt on the numbers out of Moscow.

Country singer Joe Diffie dies of coronavirus complications » Country singer Joe Diffie has died from coronavirus complications. He announced on Friday that he had tested positive for COVID-19. 

Diffie, a native of Tulsa, Oklahoma, was a member of the Grand Ole Opry for more than 25 years. Joe Diffie was 61 years old.

I’m Kent Covington. Straight ahead: the Supreme Court rules on the limits of shipping safety.

Plus, volunteers answer the call for more protective gear for healthcare workers.

This is The World and Everything in It.


MARY REICHARD: It’s Tuesday, the last day of March, 2020.

So glad you’ve chosen to start your day with The World and Everything in It. Good morning, I’m Mary Reichard.

NICK EICHER: And I’m Nick Eicher. 

The Supreme Court handed down one opinion yesterday. The case involves oil spills and cleanup costs.

A majority of justices held the charterer of an oil tanker is the one responsible for cleanup costs after a spill. 

The case goes back to the year 2004, when a tanker hit an abandoned anchor in a waterway near a docking site in New Jersey. Six thousand barrels of crude oil spilled into the Delaware River. The cleanup cost was $143 million.

REICHARD: Federal law made the ship owner initially responsible for that cost, in part reimbursed by the federal government. Both went after the company that chartered the oil tanker in the first place, CITGO. But CITGO argued its contract with the ship owner meant it only had to use due diligence to ensure the ship’s safety. It didn’t guarantee that everything would go right. 

The court disagreed.

Tough ruling against CITGO, but the majority seven were clear that charter vessel companies can write contracts that place limits on their liability.


MARY REICHARD: Coming up next on The World and Everything in It: restaurants and the coronavirus.

Across the country, governors have ordered non-essential businesses to close. That’s led to layoffs and a record number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits.

NICK EICHER: It’s also hammering business owners. Among the hardest hit are restaurants. WORLD reporter Sarah Schweinsberg now on how they’re adapting.

AUDIO: [Sound of window rolling down] 

SARAH SCHWEINSBERG, REPORTER: It’s almost noon, and the two-car wide Chick-fil-A drive-through is full. 

SCHWEINSBERG: Hi! 

EMPLOYEE: Can I have a name for your order? 

SCHWEINSBERG: Uh Sarah, 

EMPLOYEE: Sarah, what can I get for you today? 

The employees at this Layton, Utah, location walk along the cars taking orders. They wear plastic gloves and keep at least a foot from the cars.

EMPLOYEE: Cash or card? 

Employees have customers swipe their own credit cards through the mobile card readers. 

EMPLOYEE: You swipe the card with the strip facing down across the top for me. 

These precautions, along with keeping the drive through open, is helping the franchise make up for sales lost to closed dining rooms. Other restaurants are implementing similar strategies. 

Rebecca Ochoa and her husband own the Fat Cat Pizza Company in Strafford, Missouri. They only opened their sit-down pizzeria in September. That means they don’t have large cash reserves to ride out the shut-down. So they’ve converted their dine-in menu to carry-out and delivery. 

OCHOA: We are lowering prices, we are doing bundles of like pizza, salad, garlic bread, that kind of stuff. Just to kind make things a little bit more affordable for people.

Despite adapting the menu and strong community support, the restaurant has lost 30 percent of its sales. To stay afloat, the Ochoas let six employees go. 

OCHOA: We told them we don’t have hours right now, and then as soon as all of this is over we will put them back to work as quickly as possible. Primarily my husband has been running it by himself. 

But some restaurants struggle to convert to a take-out menu. John Hampton owns the Black Stag Brewery and Pub in Lawrence, Kansas.

HAMPTON: We sell things like steaks, pasta, seafood and a lot of that kind of stuff.

Lawrence, Kansas, is home to Kansas University. The coronavirus sent many of the school’s 30,000 college students home for the rest of the year. With fewer people in town, the cost of keeping the kitchen open for take-out outweighs the potential profits. 

And before the coronavirus hit, Hampton put most of the restaurant’s profits toward paying a construction loan. Now, he’s had to let 40 employees go. 

HAMPTON: It’s been hard. There’s no money coming in and we are just trying to wait things out and hope that we can reopen the doors as soon as possible. Right now we are looking at disaster loans and Small Business Association loans just to keep the lights on at this point. 

Mellissa Fleischut heads the New York Restaurant Association. She says in New York City, the national hotspot for the coronavirus, many people aren’t even ordering takeout.

FLEISCHUT: People are just afraid to leave their house even go get that take out or carry out order. 

In places upstate, a restaurant’s ability to survive could come down to the luck of the menu. 

FLEISCHUT: Were they doing take out and delivery before, had they previously had that market available to them, how did they let the public know that they were still open. Menu options are a big one. Some of the folks were trying to offer their entire menu for take out when it’s not conducive to that 20-minute drive home have had some problems and have had to readjust. 

Fleischut says for those restaurants that haven’t been able to do take-out or delivery successfully, the new $2 trillion stimulus package will help.

The National Restaurant Association says U.S. restaurants employ 15 million people—about 9 percent of the workforce. Right now the association estimates between a third and half of food service employees have already lost their jobs. Many restaurant employees work part-time or multiple jobs, but some depend entirely on one job. 

Twenty-three-year-old Saray Neipp is a barista at KuppaJoy, a Christian-owned coffee shop franchise in Fresno, California. She manages one of the franchise’s now-closed shops. 

NEIPP:  I had several meltdowns and just like, “Oh man, what am I gonna do?” Because I’m married and we’re also fresh out of college, we have a lot of student debt… and my husband is self-employed, so he gets taxed so much more than we were anticipating.

Thankfully, the franchise also runs two drive-throughs where Neipp is still able to work. But her hours have been cut in half, so she’s also applied for unemployment benefits. 

Neipp says her stress levels are high, but she’s also experiencing more generosity from co-workers and customers than ever before. 

NEIPP: Luckily, I have some really great co-workers and they called me as soon as they found out and they were like hey do you want some of my hours? There’s been a really… A really big streak of generosity and just kindness from most of our regulars… I’ve been surprised to see lines that ring around the whole parking lot.

Reporting for WORLD, I’m Sarah Schweinsberg in Layton, Utah.


MARY REICHARD: Healthcare workers face a double whammy during this time: caring for others who are sick and protecting themselves from getting sick. It’s a major challenge given  the short supply of PPEs, by which I mean Personal Protective Equipment. Things like surgical masks, N95 respirator masks, face shields, and isolation gowns.

NICK EICHER: Most PPEs are mass produced in China. But COVID-19 closed those factories and left hospitals around the world scrambling to find new suppliers. Factories that normally make things like clothing are retooling to meet that need. But until then, volunteers are taking up needle and thread to fill the gap. WORLD correspondent Jenny Lind Schmitt has our story.

JENNY LIND SCHMITT, REPORTER: Victory Lonnquist is a 20 year veteran and chaplain of the Seattle Fire Department. She’s no stranger to disaster response. She joined relief efforts after the 2004 tsunami in Thailand and Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico.

But the need now in her own backyard is completely different.

LONNQUIST: My friend reached out—she’s an ER nurse—and said she was doing her hospital shifts in a bandana. I drove up to Everett…and gave her our personal N95 mask, turned around, came home, and started the Nationwide Mask and PPE drive.

She calls the group Stop the Bug dot org. It started on March 19th with a Facebook page that quickly gained over 2,000 followers. Volunteers built a website to organize the donation and creation of PPE for Seattle-area hospitals.

Lonnquist says one of the biggest challenges in relief work is communication between groups to avoid duplicating efforts. So with help from local tech companies and universities, Stop the Bug is building a database and an app to help quickly match resources and needs nationwide.

LONNQUIST: A nurse or a doctor that is approved could just reach into their phone and put in, ‘we need 300,000 boxes of N95 masks’ that would appear on the database which would then ping all of us who are doing the donation drive so that we know, OK we need to send those N95s to this hospital, we could check it off and therefore not duplicate efforts.

But Lonnquist is also advocating an innovative approach to conserve the number of masks in the national stockpile. Working with the head of infectious disease at Seattle’s Harborview Hospital, she got patterns approved for home sewers.

LONNQUIST: What we’ve designed is a mask that goes over the N95 mask to extend the prolonged use. So that maybe you issue a doctor or a nurse one N95 mask for their whole shift. They put on the cloth mask over it. At the end of their shift the N95 is still intact and reusable and the cloth mask then gets thrown into the hospital linens, gets rewashed and used for the next shift. 

Sewers all across the nation are answering the call in Washington state but also their own local hospitals. Mandi Landry lives in Pearland, Texas, a suburb of Houston.

AUDIO: [Sewing machine]

LANDRY: I first heard about the need for sewn masks on Facebook. Some nurses were on there talking about how they were already starting to run low, already being told to reuse stuff, and just mentioned the need: if anyone can sew, they said, we’d love some masks!

Guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that when no face masks are available, healthcare personnel may use cloth masks or scarves as a last resort.

LANDRY: I can make about 10 an hour if it’s an uninterrupted hour, so it’s not massive amounts of masks, but at the same time it’s one of those things where everyone does the little bit that they can to help.

Everyone making homesewn masks knows they aren’t comparable to proper medical supplies. These efforts are a stop-gap measure necessary until local industries can reconfigure to make supplies.

Jeff Kaas runs a small furniture factory in Mukilteo outside of Seattle.

KAAS: We have tons of masks being made next door, tons of shields being made next door. And there’s a whole lot of joy. 

When he heard about the need, he contacted a friend at a local hospital. Within days he had design specs from the hospital and a pattern in place. Employees stopped sewing upholstery and started making masks. The factory has also started producing plastic face shields.

But even at full capacity Kaas can only supply some local hospitals. So he’s made the patterns available online for other manufacturers. Factories in Indiana, Missouri, Arizona, and even abroad are retooling with his patterns.

Kaas says the key is finding hospitals willing to innovate. 

KAAS: You need to partner with your local hospital friends and find risk takers who will break the systems in order to get the right things made that they need.

Landry says sewing masks reminds her of times in the past when ordinary citizens mobilized their efforts for a greater cause: Women rolling bandages during the Civil War, or people growing Victory Gardens during World War II.

LANDRY: I feel like that idea of us coming together and working together and doing whatever tiny little thing we can do is part of what’s going to get us all through this and to the other side.

Reporting for WORLD, I’m Jenny Lind Schmitt in King County, Washington.


NICK EICHER: Daniel Arroyo Beltran would probably be much better off had he paid attention to New Mexico’s stay-at-home order. Because now he’s got a stay-in-jail order. Let me tell you why.

Surveillance tape appears to show him attempting a kidnapping, and an assault, several of them, among many other things.

Witnesses say, a mother with her three young kids ages 9, 2 and 1, stood in the parking lot of a convenience store awaiting an Uber. Suddenly a man approaches them. He fits Beltran’s description. Police say he grabbed the 2-year-old’s arm and demanded the mother surrender her children to him. He allegedly punched the mother as he tried to take the kids.

Others tried to stop Beltran, but video shows him assaulting them, too. But at least it gave the mother time to get into the store with her children. 

Of course, the suspect followed them.

But here’s the good news:

Across the street, a teenager saw what was going on. His name is Canaan Bower, age 16. He ran into the store, body slammed the suspect, and pinned him to the ground until police arrived, who then cuffed Beltran, and took him away.

Now, you need to know Canaan Bower is not your typical 16-year-old. He’s the District 3-5A wrestling champion, heavyweight division. That’s 285 pounds.

Almost goes without saying, young Canaan appears to have a bright future ahead of him!

It’s The World and Everything in It.


NICK EICHER: Today is Tuesday, March 31st. Thank you for turning to WORLD Radio to help start your day. Good morning. I’m Nick Eicher.

MARY REICHARD: And I’m Mary Reichard.

Governors in every state have shuttered schools, and sent students home. Remote learning is the new norm, for now. Teachers still distribute classwork but parents must now guide the instruction.

EICHER: Those parents who can work from home can now add “tutor” to their resumes. 

But striking that balance between paid work responsibilities and tending to their children’s education isn’t easy.

WORLD reporter Bonnie Pritchett recently spoke with a mom in southeast Texas about the lessons she’s having to learn.

HEATHER AND CARSON: [TYPING AND SNIFF] Mom? Hold on a second. Ok, what do you need?…

BONNIE PRITCHETT, REPORTER: March 26, 2020: Day 11 of the Kimbrough family’s “work and learn from home” balancing act.

AUDIO: [TYPING EMAILS]

Heather Kimbrough is working from home. Her husband, Chas, is required at the office. So, by default, Heather is now homeschooling the couple’s three school-age kids. Kyla and Sara are seventh and eighth graders. And 8-year-old Carson is in second grade.

KIMBROUGH: So, I’ve been preaching a lot about routine and not following it myself as much as I needed to (laugh) So, in the beginning….

Heather is up each morning before the kids. She works while the house is quiet. Conference calls. Skype meetings. Emails and more emails. Her inbox has exploded with over 100 messages a day.

AUDIO: [RUSTLING PAPER AND CEREAL POURING]

By 7:30 a.m. the kids shuffle into her work space foraging for breakfast.

KIMBROUGH: So right about the time they’re trying to get breakfast, I’m trying to make everybody be quiet because I’m on a call…

It took more than a week for the family to find its groove.

KIMBROUGH: OK, guys. So, we need a plan for this morning [DOG BARKS]. Let him out please. So, we need to figure out what we’re going to do. I have a call at nine o-clock, but I don’t want you wasting time while I’m on the call…

The kids list their assignments for the day and are dispatched to complete them. Kimbrough is grateful for their cooperation and patience.

KIMBROUGH: Yesterday was the first day I really had the opportunity to sit down with them and work with them the way that I need to. Up to that point I was very unavailable to them…

Kyla and Sara use school-issued laptops they’ve had all year. Carson uses the family computer. Students in this school district are well acquainted with various computer platforms and programs…but their parents aren’t.

KIMBROUGH: It’s not working is it. It acts like it should just open but it didn’t. Sara, have you ever used Tumblebooks or any of the online things? SARA: No maam…

Technical problems test the limits of the school district’s servers and Kimbrough’s patience. 

KIMBROUGH: It’s wonderful that we have these options but it’s a learning curve for each individual program. And so, if one teacher’s lesson plan includes two different kinds of platforms like Flipgrid and Kahoot then the next class has two different ones.

This isn’t the first time the family has homeschooled. So, this should be easy, right?

KIMBROUGH: Their first reaction when they heard that we were transitioning to online learning they were like, ‘Oh, yeh. This will be like homeschooling again.’ Then they realized very quickly that when we were homeschooling, they were my only four students. And now they’re sharing mom with 125 other kids…

Kimbrough is a high school English teacher. Communicating with her students and their harried—but mostly agreeable—parents, coordinating with her colleagues, and helping her own children is stretching her too thin.

KIMBROUGH: We as teachers totally understand what our students’ parents are going through. And the same situation where they, you know, have to be on Skype calls for hours at a time. And not only do the kids have to work by themselves but they’re supposed to be quiet in the meantime (laughs)

Like her students’ parents, Kimbrough vacillates between roles as mom and employee

Teacher Kimbrough receives emails—some typed in all caps—from flummoxed parents and students. Then, mom watches her son grow frustrated when he can’t type fast enough to participate in a class video chat. Teacher is worried about some of her students she hasn’t heard from since spring break. And mom puzzles at her daughter’s desperate pleas for her “Wabbit Emu.”

KIMBROUGH: And I’m like ‘What is a Wabbit Emu?’ Have we really just gone off the tracks here? We figured out it’s a TI 84 calculator. I’ve got a TI 84 calculator, here’s this and suddenly she’s really relieved because it’s what’s familiar and it’s what she knows how to use.

There’s security in normalcy, she says. The new educational normal is anything but. 

Some teachers across the country face additional challenges like trying to help students without reliable WI-FI, having to deliver and then pickup handouts and assignments. 

Southeast Texas schools may open by April 13th. But that date is tentative.

MUSIC: [EVENING PRAYER BY HUMPERDINCK]

Kimbrough said parents and teachers have been walking in each others’ shoes in this new education normal.

So, when schools do open she hopes teachers and parents have more empathy for the roles each plays in the students’ lives.

She expects that she and her colleagues will better understand the technological tools at their disposal for more effective use in the classroom.

And she believes her students will be so thrilled to see each other again that, at least for a while, they will set aside their devices for real facetime.

Until then, the new normal has taught the Kimbrough family lessons from a timeless curriculum. Gentleness. Kindness. Patience. And teamwork.

What has the teacher learned?

KIMBROUGH: When I first started this, I really was trying to do too much on my own and of my own strength. And kind of hit my face on the concrete a little bit. And realized that’s not what I’m supposed to be doing and I’m going about this the wrong way. And I needed to readjust my attitude and put my faith where it really belongs.

For WORLD, I’m Bonnie Pritchett reporting, remotely, from League City, Texas.


NICK EICHER: Season 2 of The Olasky Interview podcast began last week, so for the next nine weeks, we’ll be releasing a new episode on Tuesdays. That means today’s episode is live now! Just search for The Olasky Interview on your favorite podcast platform. 

We’re also releasing these interviews on our feed of The World and Everything in It each Saturday. You probably noticed the first two episodes showed up this past Saturday. We just want to make it as easy as possible for you to stumble upon it.

This week WORLD Editor in Chief Marvin Olasky talks with author and disabilities advocate Joni Eareckson Tada. Here’s an excerpt.

MARVIN OLASKY: There’s the children’s song that if we believe in Jesus will be “happy, happy, happy, happy, happy, all the time.” Are you happy all the time?

JONI ERICKSON TADA: In the morning, when I get up, I mean, I’ve got like 13 different women who helped me get up seven different mornings, 20 different ways. But I hear them come into the kitchen, I hear them running water for coffee. And I know that they’re going to be coming into my bedroom with a happy: “Hello,” and give me a bed bath, do my toileting routines, put on my corset, pull up my pants, put me in the wheelchair, give me breakfast, shove me out the front door…and I’m thinking, I’m lying there thinking: “Oh God, I am so tired of this routine. I am so weary. I have no strength for this day. God. God, I can’t do quadriplegia.”

And Marvin maybe the really handicapped people are the ones who, I don’t know, they wake up in the morning, they hit the alarm, they pull throw back the covers, they take a quick shower, they scarf down breakfast, give God a “speedy tip of the hat” of a quiet time. And then they’re zooming out the door on automatic cruise control. God says if you live that way he’s against you. 

EICHER: That’s Joni Eareckson Tada. To hear more of this conversation, catch this week’s episode of The Olasky Interview wherever you get your podcasts.


NICK EICHER: Today is Tuesday, March 31st. Good morning to you! This is The World and Everything in It from listener-supported WORLD Radio. I’m Nick Eicher.

MARY REICHARD: And I’m Mary Reichard. Here’s WORLD commentator Janie B. Cheaney on futures. And we’re not talking financial ones.

JANIE B. CHEANEY, COMMENTATOR: What will be the score two months from now? I wish I could ask my future self if it’s safe to fly, or if the kids are back in school, or if the shelves are fully stocked. Or if I’m struggling to breathe and someone I know is dead.

Don’t panic, they say. I don’t see panic, just a larger number of shoppers stocking up, with an attitude of cheerful resignation. Last week many of them had decisions to make—about spring break, or meetings, or travel, or church. 

Now all the decisions have been made for them.

A few days ago my 2020 Bible-reading plan started me on Luke. Talk about disruption! There they were, Zechariah going about his sacred duties and Mary tending her mundane ones, when a visit from the angel Gabriel turned everything upside-down. Zechariah trembled with fear and Mary was “greatly troubled.” Both struggled to grasp what the angel was saying. Both would later rejoice with songs of inspired praise.

If Mary could have seen her future self, sobbing at the foot of a cross, would she have sung of bringing down the mighty, exalting the humble, and scattering the proud? Disruptions can lead to happy results, or evil ones, or some of both, but on that Friday she could see nothing but evil. 

Doesn’t everything, after all, end in the grave? The only difference is how we get there. And if that’s the case, Mary might have preferred to skip the angelic visit and the career of her remarkable Son. Better to forego all that wonder, joy, and consternation, if heartbreak was the certain end.

Unless you hold stock in Purell or Campbell Soup Company, you’d rather skip global pandemics too. Who wouldn’t say “No thanks” to a plunging Dow and a nationwide quarantine? Hey people, I have plans!

Try saying that to God.

He doesn’t have one purpose in the current disruption; he has millions of them. Suppose everyone slows and pays more attention to family and neighbors? Suppose our government honestly sizes up its emergency response and cuts some red tape? Suppose nations develop better strategies, break up some monopolies, and position themselves for next time? 

Because, with increasing global connections, there will be a next time. Think of COVID-19 as a dress rehearsal, complete with technical glitches and missed cues, and it might help us prepare for something worse.

Also, think of the ground trembling under a tomb, a mighty hand pushing aside a thousand-pound stone. The greatest disruption the world ever saw has already happened, and we’re living it. I can’t predict next week, but Christ has predicted me. The near future is obscure; the ultimate one secure.

I’m Janie B. Cheaney.


NICK EICHER: Tomorrow: Federal and local governments increasingly are enforcing orders to stay at home. We’ll talk about the limits of those powers.

And, we’re all homeschoolers now, so in that spirit, we’ll have more tips from a veteran homeschooler to help all the newbies. 

That and more tomorrow. 

I’m Nick Eicher.

MARY REICHARD: And I’m Mary Reichard.

The World and Everything in It comes to you from WORLD Radio.

WORLD’s mission is biblically objective journalism that informs, educates, and inspires.

Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. 

Go now in grace and peace.


WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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