Several people have written to tell me about how they are dropping out from watching or reading the news. They call it a "news fast." It seems as though the headlines are so full of hate-filled acts, confusion, war, natural disasters, suffering, and even plagues that some people just can't take it anymore. It is information overload in a very dark way. I have to admit as someone who observes news and events, these days are among the worst I've seen in a journalistic career spanning 46 years. While the previous decade was marked with identifiable prophetic news, the past year has been outright chaos driven by hate and division-not only in the United States, but around the world.
Indeed, these times we live in seem to be an ever-increasing time of trouble. While we are not in the time of Jacob's Trouble (Biblical tribulation), these are prophetic days in that they are racing toward prophetic events. These are times when events are coming into alignment so that prophetic events will come about. We see the hearts of men growing cold through terrible rhetoric. There are natural disasters taking place in the Middle East such as the earthquake in Iran. Israel is deploying defenses against increased terror attacks. Saudi Arabia is in upheaval. There is famine predicted in Yemen. Major leaders oppose one another on one front, and are allies on another. Relationships are disrupted and strained.
These events test faith. They pressure our senses. They can cause conflict within the mind. They may prompt withdrawal from society-such as "news fasts." Taking a break from it probably isn't a bad idea-some time to rethink, regroup, refresh. But it doesn't make it go away. We are a prophetic people living in prophetic times. Our challenge is to make disciples in this dark and dying world that offers up so much clear and present danger. We cannot shrink from our Great Commission, otherwise the world gets darker. Resist the temptation to bury your talent. These are times when our talent should be invested and multiplied.
If you are feeling the pressure of events running out of control, remember what Paul wrote in 2 Timothy 1:7, "For God has not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." Recall the word of God in Psalm 46:1-2, "God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea." Nahum 1:7 says, "The Lord is good, a strong hold in the day of trouble; and he knows them that trust in him." The noise of the news, the events that shape the words in the mouths of the world, are of no effect to those who trust in the Lord. Stay focused on the Lord. He is your refuge.
Have a Blessed and Powerful Day!