“They’re back!” I looked out our window facing the pond this week and there they were. The pair of Canada Geese from last year returned. Ice was still on the pond, but I think they were ‘house hunting’ on shore for a new 2020 place to call home and lay eggs. I took a photo of one last year and did this Ink with pen and brush. Why did I choose this Art piece for our Thought—Pandemic?
Canada Geese represent one of the created creatures that instinctively multiply. Some love the geese, others hate the ‘mess’ the parents and offspring create. The living coronavirus also multiplies. I know of no one who likes it. We dislike the health, social and economic ‘mess’ it creates.
The coronavirus is on everyone’s mind. We are told that in the most classical sense, once an epidemic spreads to multiple countries or regions of the world, it is considered a pandemic. Just this week U.S. scientists began using pandemic to define the spread of the disease known as COVID-19—coronavirus.
I do understand, but I think it unfortunate that the word pandemic itself, throughout history, seems always to be associated with the spread of harmful disease. I am not aware of pandemic having been associated with the spread of anything positive that may also be contagiously transmitted person to person. I’d like to suggest one—love.
I refer to a specific kind of love. The word ‘love’ is the somewhat inadequate English translation of the New Testament Greek word transliterated agape. It’s meaning is different from the definition behind other Greek words, even though they are also translated with the English word ‘love’:
- philadelphia (love) expresses a brotherly kind of relationship
- eros (love) expresses a sexual kind of relationship.
- agape (love) expresses a God kind of relationship. “God is love.” 1 John 4:16.
This God kind of agape love is transmitted—communicated—person to person. It is God’s desire for all his creation. “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son…” John 3:16
In the Old Testament, God created out of love. “Then God said, “Let us make man in our image in our likeness, and let them rule… [have loving care for all God created]. Genesis 1:26 “And [God] saw all that he had made, and it was very good.” Genesis 1:31
In the New Testament Jesus said, “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you.” John 15:9 “This is my command; love each other.” John 15:17
These two quotes are from two of my favorite authors. I’ve quoted them before
“Love is born of an earnest consideration of the object loved.” Thomas Aquinas
“Love is the disposition to bring good to the object that is loved.” Dallas Willard
“People exist to love as Jesus loved, Indeed, the aim of God in human history is the creation of an all-inclusive community of loving persons with himself at the center of that community—as its prime sustainer and most glorious inhabitant.” — Life Without Lack, Living in the Fullness of Psalm 23
Jesus’ final command to all who have become his followers is to take the Father’s message of his agape love and infect as many as possible as you go throughout your daily life. How? By bringing the infectious love of God into the lives of those you contact via your “bringing good to them” and by that example.
May we see a pandemic of God’s love spread in our homes, communities, nation and the world.
With news media hurling stories of loss and change in the wake of coronavirus restrictions, many we know will be open to receiving a “cup of cold water” with love, in the name of Jesus. People need personal peace, via God’s love, in a time of anxiety.
A Prayer: How can I be a part of God’s pandemic of love to His/my world?
We may even be able to deal with some of the ‘mess’ connected with the coronavirus and the Canada Geese in our world!