Need An Encouraging Word?

Do you need some cheering up? This American Presidential run to election has brought an incredible heaviness on our nation. The accusations, barbs, rumors, half-truths and hatred, splashing across our televisions daily can be a downer. I’m a news junky. I like to be informed, up to date. But I’ve occasionally joined the chorus of those saying, “I’m sick of this.”

That’s why a couple recent stories caught my eye, one in the corner of page six in the October 10, 2016 issue of Time magazine. Normally, I would smile at such trivia and move on. Not this time. I found myself surprised with gratitude for a small piece of good news amid the barrage of negativity in the air.

It was a story about a woman in San Diego, California, who found $5,000 in a Domino’s pizza box. Before you start researching flights to San Diego to find that Dominos pizza joint, read on. What did she do with her strike-it-rich discovery? She returned it to Dominos. What did they do for her? The company gave her free pizza for life. There was nothing to indicate her motivation in the brief account, but what an inspiring response. And what an admirable comeback on the part of Dominos Pizza.

If your are in a despondent mood thinking good people are an endangered species theses days, think again. Sometimes we have to search hard to see good, and there is a challenge to that search. A prevailing wind against our being able to see good people who do good things, is an American news cycle saturated with bad news. If there is a redemptive, feel-good story, it’s usually tacked on the end of a depressing news broadcast. Reality is, many good people are quietly doing good things everyday.

Then on Friday, October 14, the Chicago Tribune had this headline: “Amid hate-filled election mega church launches ‘love’ campaign”. Robert McCoppin explained that a local church is “trying to instill a bit of the sacred in a profane campaign.” So on Monday, October 17, just 22 days from election day, “some commuters in Chicago will be greeted on their way to work with the message, ‘Love Everyone, Always’”, on electronic bill boards. Way to go Willow Creek Church! After all, you may have heard that “God so loved the (whole) world” – everyone. So God sent Jesus to show us love at its best. Even a radio announcer on Chicago talk radio, WBBM, sharing this love story Saturday morning when I first heard it, touted in so many words, ‘that’s Biblical.’

I’m a strong believer in the Bible’s message of inspired truth. After reading about the right move made by the above mentioned woman who got more than pizza in her Dominos’ box, I thought of a Scripture in the New Testament book of Philippians, chapter 4, verse 8: “Finally, beloved, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” For the record, that statement was written by a man held against his will, in a place he did not want to be.

The Bible does not call us to bury our heads in the sand and pretend evil and sin do not exist. They certainly do! We are called to be careful where we let our minds hang out.

I had kind of lost that concentration in the hurricane of disheartening news. Maybe you need a focus correction too. I felt a bit better after reading and hearing these stories. Do you know why? The Bible rings the bell of truth again when it says, “good news refreshes the body.” (Proverbs 15:30) Yes it does. And there’s more of it than you might have noticed lately.

Author: Randy J. Gauger

Christ-follower, husband of Mary for 52 years, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, writer, preacher, ordained American Baptist Pastor, retired.

2 thoughts on “Need An Encouraging Word?”

  1. Randy
    We miss you so much. Just what I needed in the midst of negative and somewhat scary news. Thanks for directing my thoughts heavenward.

    Like

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