Summary: I’d like to see a newspaper or news program that was all about ‘good news’…the great things that happen each and every day all over the world

Good News – Great Joy! Dec. 13, 2009

Are there any ‘news junkies’ out there today? News junkies are people who like to know what, where, why, when and how about all the things going on in the world around us, and indeed around the world.

How many of us read the newspaper when it comes to our house, or maybe at the office? This can be quite a ritual. Get the paper from the front door (does that count as exercise?), make some coffee, sit in your favourite spot and open the paper to the same section you usually do…sports, local news, stock prices, obituaries, classifieds, national news, etc. The only thing is, the paper is seems to be filled with more ads than actual news articles. Have you seen the number of ads in the paper lately? I brought just the last couple of week’s ads I pulled from the newspapers, and we only get the local free paper, not the Times Colonist. Look at this stack! And we are only one household. This is over 5 lbs of paper. Multiply that by all the homes in our area, in Victoria, and BC, and Canada, and North America, and…that’s a lot of paper!

Now, how many of us get our news from the radio or television? That’s where I like to get my news. Why? Because the paper is yesterday’s news; I like to know what’s happening NOW. We live in an age where we can find out almost instantly when something happens pretty much anywhere in the world. The alert of ‘breaking news’ will catch our attention in a heartbeat. What’s happening? What’s going on? Will I be delayed in getting home or to the mall because of a traffic accident? There are 24-hour news channels on TV and radio, broadcasting all the latest from sock quotes to celebrity relationship breakdowns. With the advent of satellite phones, we can even get a live feed from the middle of the Afghan desert by a journalist in the middle of the Middle East during a battle between local insurgents and an army made up of people from all over the world. It’s scary really.

We can get live pictures of people shooting at each other while at war or at a public school, stories of car bombs going off near a hotel where world leaders are gathered, flood victims watching their home destroyed before their eyes and ours, and live feeds from refugee camps of adults and children starving, hurting, sick and dying. It used to be that we would wait for days or weeks to get news from around the world, now we complain when the picture on the TV is a little fuzzy.

The thing with the news these days is that most of the time it’s the ‘bad news’ that gets our attention. It’s the terrible things that happen to people or by people that make us want to hear it, see it and be glad it’s not us in the news or that it’s not too close to home.

Sad really; it’s the shocking, brutal, disastrous, and awful stories that we can’t seem to pull away from, and that also get the big ratings for those who broadcast them first.

I’d like to see a newspaper or news program that was all about ‘good news’…the great things that happen each and every day all over the world, and even right here in the West Shore of Victoria. Why can’t good news be the thing that we want to hear over and over?

I’ve titled this little message ‘Good News, Great Joy’ and I’ve asked a special guest to recite today’s scripture. His name is Linus, perhaps you know him?

Video clip – Peanuts Christmas, Linus’ monologue

The Shepherds and the Angels Luke 2:1-8 (NIV)

8And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. 11Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. 12This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."

13Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, 14"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men"

Back in the day when this all happened, some 2000 years ago, there were no TV’s, I-Phones, cell phones, syndicated papers and radio news programs, Facebook status updates or Twitter ‘tweets’ to let people know about news. So how was God to tell everyone about the birth of His Son, Jesus Christ? Can you imagine if we received a ‘tweet’ from Yahweh, saying something like, ‘My Son was just born in a stable in Bethlehem, check it out.’ Or if God’s Facebook status was ‘God…was just born as a baby’. How many of us would click the ‘like’ button on that one?

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