June 2023

June 2023

Watching the News


You may already know that I don’t watch the news. But I know what’s going on. These days, you can’t help but know what’s going on. Even if you try to avoid knowing what's going on but – on vacation, I try to avoid knowing what's going on, but – you walk past a screen and see the story and the crawl, it pops up on your own screen, you’re talking to somebody, and it just happens.


Many of you have had conversations with me about things, and I talk about a lot of things to you, and I actually like to talk about what’s going on, and there’s a lot going on, and sometimes I talk to you about what's going on from the pulpit. But if I’m going to sit in front of the TV in the evening, I’m going to want to relax and be entertained, and the news is neither of those things.


You can get news 24/7 from any number of sources featuring any number and degree of viewpoint, and some people do that, and if you want to do that – I think a lot of people are angry, sad, and worried a lot of the time. I’m one of those people, but I’m trying to limit those things, especially getting worried, sad, and angry at things that I can’t do anything about, and they don’t involve me.


There’s a lot of money in 24/7 news, most of it from advertising. The more viewers you have, the more you can charge for a commercial spot on your network. But just because the profit motive – and I’m in favor of the profit motive – tries to get you to watch more news, and the ubiquitous, never-ending talking heads who tell you what to think about the news…but I don’t have to.


Whenever I think or talk like that, I am reminded of the Epistle we read every Thanksgiving, from Philippians 4: 4-9, where Paul tells us to rejoice, to not worry about things, and to pray to God,


Rejoice in the Lord always, again I say, Rejoice. Let all men know your forbearance. The Lord is at hand. Have no anxiety about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.


We think all the time because that’s how we are built. On Sunday morning, you are going to be thinking about something. I want that something to be God. The rest of the week,


Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.


Who tells us to be upset about what’s going on in Ukraine, or Haiti, or in California, and who tells us to be scared about weather that seems to have become much more dangerous than it used to be. I’m not going to tell you what to watch or listen to. If I did that, you might tell me what to watch or listen to, and that would be a disaster! I know what’s going on. But I don’t watch the news.


In Christian Service,


Pastor Anderson