Influenza – should we be worried?
The influenza outbreak in Malaysia is showing no signs of stopping. Every day, more and more cases are being reported in schools throughout the nation, from Johor to Selangor, Pahang, Perak, and Penang. Most of these affect the young – the most vulnerable in our society to illnesses – as concerned parents go on the hunt for vaccines amidst fears of an outbreak.
Several deaths related to Influenza A have also been reported, with the Education Ministry even advising that sick children stay at home. There are reports in the news of concerned parents frantically rushing from clinic to clinic to be put on waiting lists for vaccines, as stocks continue to deplete in clinics and hospitals. Amidst all the panic, what are we to do?
All of us worry about our health, and it’s only natural to do so. It’s even more worrying when it involves our own children and loved ones. We may do our best to wear facial masks, practise good hygiene, avoid crowded areas, take vitamins or inoculate ourselves. But sometimes, we may still catch infections. Despite our best efforts, some things are still out of our control.
People who don’t believe in a loving God may point it all down to “bad luck”. Some may end up blaming themselves for not doing enough to protect themselves or their children. But our fears and worries about disease only reveal one thing – life is fragile.
The Bible confirms this in Psalm 103:15, “The life of mortals is like grass, they flourish like a flower of the field.” Since the fall of Adam and Eve, the human race live in a world that is infected by sin. As a result, we are exposed and vulnerable to all its failings, including evil, sickness, disease, and death.
As Christians, we are to hold on tightly to the hope we have in God. The pursuit of good health – even beauty, wealth, knowledge, education, and human relationships – are not guarantees in this life. Our only hope is in an eternal and loving God, who promises to work “for the good of those who love him” (Romans 8:28).
For me, the lesson is to make the best of my very limited time here on earth. He has called us to do the good works He has tasked us with and to live with purpose everyday, doing our best and leaving the rest to Him. He provides the strength we need each day. – W.P.Lim
Lord Jesus, help us to see how fragile are our lives are. Help us understand that despite living in a fallen world, we have hope in a loving God who is in control of everything.
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