I have noted that most of the time the news media emphasizes bad news of the day. Some say that’s because bad news sells better than good news. I don’t really know why it is that way. But I do find that most of the time, I have to search the news for some good news. It’s there somewhere, but not easy to find. To me the prominence of bad news is in itself bad news. And too much bad news can lead to a sense of hopelessness. Which is not good for someone who is writing a blog about hope. Nevertheless, I continue to hope that there will be some obvious good news prominently reported. And there have been times when my hope has been fulfilled. I have also noted that every now and then, while the bad news is always there, a bit of good news is given priority. When that happens, that in itself is good news. And that reassures me that my hope for good news in the midst of bad news is justified.
Here’s a recent example. On Saturday, October 13, I picked up the the Philadelphia Inquirer. Usually the first thing I see is another bad news headline. However, this time, at the top of the front page, the headline read “Peace prize goes to EU” (The European Union). The article which followed explained that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2012 was awarded to the 27 nation European Union for its role in building peace and reconciliation among enemies who fought Europe’s bloodiest wars. It said that one of the statements made during the the presentation speech was: “…Over a 70 year period, , Germany and France had fought three wars. Today, war between Germany and France is unthinkable.”
This award is good news. But more than that it is good news that the event has been recognized by the news media. Even more than that, it is good news that this newspaper, and possibly others, saw fit to print this article in the most prominent place in their publication. At the top of the front page. The first thing anyone sees as the newspaper lies folded on the news stand. And I must say that, while this priority to good news does not seem to be standard practice, I have seen it from time to time.
Of course, right under that article was bad news. A story about the war in Afghanistan. I don’t have to comment on that. It’s hard to get away from it. Yes, it seems that in one form or another, there is war going on someplace in our world all the time. And sometimes it seems that there is no hope for peace. However, as I was reminded as I read this newspaper article, 60 years ago, as World War II raged on three continents, few people had any real hope for a world of peace, love, and joy. Yet some did have that hope, and this award recognized that on the European continent, this hope was for the most part fulfilled. This gives me hope that, despite all the bad news that I read and hear these days, God’s kingdom (God’s rule) will be fulfilled on earth as it is in heaven. All over the earth and for eternity. In God’s time and God’s way.
So where does that hope come from? For me it comes through the occasional good news reports in the news media, my reading of history and the Bible, and observations and experience as I go through life day by day, year by year. But ultimately, my hope comes from God. Without God there is no hope. With God, there is always hope. I have no doubt that the fulfilling of faith-based hopes is what God has always done, is doing now, and will always be doing, even when we aren’t aware of His presence and His ongoing work. I believe that most of the writers, editors, and publishers of the news media are probably not aware that God is involved in their work. I believe that, without their realizing it, God inspires them to sometimes display good news, not just in the midst of bad news, but above the bad news.
Every now and then, when the news is especially bad, I have to admit that I have a tendency to feel hopeless. I have to admit that at times like that I sometimes wonder why I write this blog. But I am soon reminded that I do this because I God inspires me to do so. Here I hasten to add that much of God’s inspiration comes through my good friend and partner in Ray of Hope Ministries, Patty Perez. But even when I get on with what God wants to do with me and, I also wonder why God wants Patty and me to publish this particular blog. After all, there are so many other really good blogs out there. In the whole scheme of things, I there aren’t that many people following us. So what difference do we make?
Here’s what I believe. As long as we are doing what God inspires us to do, including this blog, then it’s not for us to have to know why. At east, not at the moment. God has His reasons. God has His purpose. Maybe some day He’ll fill us in. But right now Patty and I are blessed to be able to do what God gives us to do in furthering part of His purpose, which includes giving hope to people. It doesn’t matter how many people read our blog. What matters is that God has inspired us to publish our blog as one small way of giving faith-based hope for a world of peace, love, and joy – the kingdom of God on earth as in heaven – to us and our readers. So keep hoping for God-given good news. I can assure you that you will find some. And again, God will fulfill your faith-based hopes, in His time and His way.
Grace and peace, Ray