Wake-up Calls or Snooze Alarms
Many Christians called the shocking events of 9/11/2001 a wake-up call. Hurricane Katrina was another one, when it destroyed much of New Orleans with a fierce combination of winds and flood. Temporarily, hurting people turned to God, praying for peace, for comfort, for revival. Even catastrophes can accomplish some good, bringing renewed courage and heroism, as individuals, communities, families, and churches pull together. On the other hand, this renewal of spiritual interest has waned. And for multitudes, these tragic events were more like a snooze alarm. Some are still snoozing.
Personal health crisis may also result in a turn around, bringing lifestyle changes for the better, renewed determination to conquer unhealthy habits, resulting in a lowered risk of disease. That means even a heart attack, a cancer operation, a stroke or an accident, can result in ultimate good, when a person truly wakes up, and refuses to go back to the snooze-button-land of status quo.
A few weeks ago all Americans were warned to discard all fresh spinach, fearing contamination from the dreaded E. coli germ. I couldn=t help wondering what percentage of shoppers were eating spinach before. Observing people, the fast-food outlets found most Americans continuing to fill up their stomachs with French fries, hormone-laced cheeseburgers, and sugared beverages. In some homes, the family dog gets more health oriented cuisine than its master. As food shoppers eschewed fresh spinach, the sales of soda, meat, pizza, and pastries stayed strong. Americans put filters on their faucets to strain out the chemicals, but spend their precious leisure hours in front of the tube, exercising thumbs on the remote control, while our bones and muscles cry daily for action.
At this writing, nearly 27% of American adults still smoke, and two thirds of our neighbors and relatives remain overweight or obese. Fortunately, there are quite a few choice friends who have profited immensely from 10-days of crisis intervention at the Live-for-Health Wellness Program. These no longer worry over the mad-cow prion, since Wellness Center graduates have given up the use of such high-risk animal foods. And, while making a change from social tradition, we see the cholesterol come down in blood tests, with the risk of heart attack reduced dramatically as well. For such blessings, and many new friends, we give thanks to God, and go forward.
Sometimes we think we understand the concept of risk. Yet, we worry way too much, get depressed too easily, and forget to ask daily for strength from the One who really knows and cares. Yes, we are shadowed daily by peril, but our appeal today is to trust God more with our life and health, casting all our anxiety upon Him, for "He careth for you."