Lately, we’ve been hearing from several sources citing certain people who say that now see “the light at the end of the tunnel” in terms of curtailing the novel coronavirus outbreak. Besides Government leaders, some health officials studying local data say that numbers of those tested positive are beginning to level off. They assert, for example, that with more of a capacity for testing, the amount of hospital cases are starting to flatten.
At the same time, however, they are warning that the U.S. will still see an increase in deaths related to the coronavirus. In fact, on April 7, the U.S. Surgeon General, Jerome Adams recently said there’s “light at the end of tunnel” as long as American keep following social distancing as well as other precautions, according to news sources. He also warned there would still be higher numbers of coronavirus deaths.
Although statistics fluctuate depending on the source, the total amount of novel coronavirus cases in the U.S. I’ve seen reported as of April 24 is 903,775. Closed cases which had an outcome totaled 141,249 including 50,988 (36%) deaths and 90,261 (64%) reported as recovered/discharged. (worldometers.info).
These numbers are why people are anxiously looking for light at the end of the tunnel. But while some see a glimmer of hope that things will soon get better, others don’t. The only light they see at the end of the coronavirus tunnel is the headlight of a fast-moving train coming their way.
Of course, we can’t get over this plague fast enough. So we look for any slight clue that will indicate any escape from this dreaded dilemma in which we are dealing. We’d all like to get back to “normal,” but we know things will never be the same again. We have to get used to a “new normal” where virtually everything we’re accustomed to will change. Even church gatherings will be affected.
I won’t be surprised to hear that when churches are able to congregate again, new precautions will be required: Social distancing of 6 feet wherein I suppose seating will have to be rearranged. Worshippers will probably have to wear personal protective equipment (PPE) such as masks and gloves. That’ll make singing and clapping really fun! Of course, no touching such as hand shaking and hugs.
I suppose this means we’ll never be able to do the actions of the song, “Shake Another Hand”: https://youtu.be/v7zh_yCar48
It’s a good thing this outbreak didn’t happen in Bible times. It would be a little difficult to “greet one another with a holy kiss,” (2 Corinthians 13:12; 1 Thessalonians 5:26; 1 Peter 5:14) from 6 feet away! Maybe they could just throw a holy kiss to one another through their masks!
Perhaps we’ll go back to the old fashioned way of greeting: Bow or curtsy to one another. That ought to be an interesting sight when the pastor calls for everyone to turn and greet one another at the beginning of the service.
And will the entire church facility have to be sprayed down with disinfectant before and after each service? And what about church socials and dinners? How will all that change?
So many questions; so few satisfying answers.
When it comes to light at the end of the tunnel, be ready when it comes. For what you think you see or don’t see will depend on how you see it. Will you see it in the light of handling it right when ever it is DOES come?
This is where being a Christian believer is most beneficial. For one thing, what we see as light is not gloom and doom like an oncoming train. Our outlook toward the future is much brighter and more reassuring than that for God has an escape plan even though the tunnel may be dark and long. Like the Apostle Paul said to the Corinthian Church,
“No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it,” (1 Cor. 10:13, New American Standard Bible, NASB).
On the other hand, the light we see ahead in not just daylight. If that’s all there is, then we’d be in for a let down. For even the light of day will turn to the darkness of night as soon as the sun goes down.
No, there’s a better Light, with a capital “L”—a more lasting one that will never cease to shine forth with strength, encouragement, and hope. By now, you probably know the Light to whom I am referring.
Our Light at the end of the tunnel is Jesus Christ. In uncertain times like these, we may find ourselves stumbling and fumbling in search of a glimmer of hope as though we’re in a dark, dreary, dangerous seemingly endless tunnel. But then, we look ahead and realize Jesus is there to provide the Light, the way out of it all. For he, himself, declared,
“…I am the light of the world; he who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life,” (John 8:12, NASB).
Jesus makes all the difference when it comes to the trials and uncertainties we face. For he is the Light of our lives and, therefore, the Light of our salvation. Paul said,
“For God, who said, ‘Light shall shine out of darkness,’ is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ,” (2 Cor. 4:6, NASB).
As God has sent his Son to be our Light, we can be a light to others who are stumbling in their own dark tunnel. Many are longing for the Light and we can lead them to the end of the tunnel by shining our lights leading to Christ THE Light. Jesus said to his followers,
“You are the light of the world….” (Matthew 5:14).
“In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven,” (Matt. 5:16, New International Version, NIV).
Therefore, while we hear from those who see a light at the end of the coronavirus tunnel, don’t forget the Light for us to see at the end of our own tunnel. We have much to look forward to, especially the Kingdom of God when there will be no tunnels, and all there will be is the everlasting Light of glory shining forth from God and His Son, just as the Apostle John envisioned:
“The city [the New Jerusalem] does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God gives it light, and the Lamb is its lamp….There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever,” (Revelation 21:23; 22:5, NIV).
Good News to YOU!
P. S. Here’s Christian group, Third Day, singing, “Tunnel”: http://youtu.be/T31UboYGB7w