The Virus (Part 1)

If someone were to say to me, “What’s a big thing happening in Japan and the area around it?” I would definitely say one thing right away.

If someone were to say, “What thing is bothering you in your daily life in Japan, clogging up your head, prodding you all the time?” I would also talk about this.

If that person were to ask me, “What worries you the most out of the many things that are happening in and around Japan?” I might also answer this.

What is this, you say?

It is the Coronavirus, more specifically, COVID-19.

The Coronavirus has continued to find and torment more victims in China, Japan, Korea, and really, all around the world. Since starting in Wuhan, China, at the beginning of the year, it has continued to get bigger and stronger every day.

At first, no one thought it was a big deal. “Oh, it won’t spread,” the Chinese government assured. “It will die down by the middle of February.”

Yet, now, even though we are entering the second week of March, the virus is still continuing to spread.

Now, this post isn’t for me to wail about how difficult the virus is making people’s lives, and talk about how dangerous is or to stir up panic. I am here to give you insight on how it is here in Japan and how I honestly feel about it.

Here are a few things that happened related to the virus:

The Mask and Toilet Paper Disappearance

As the danger has increased, masks have become harder to find in stores. Everywhere I look, stores are lined and overflowing with various products, but the section selling masks is empty.

And when people can’t find masks, they panic. Panicked people think they may have to stay in their houses for a long time, so they buy as many rolls of toilet paper as they can, as well as any amount of masks they can find. They think even if they have to go outside, they’ll be prepared.

In my opinion, they are over-reacting. This means some people cannot get the toilet paper they really need. And that’s a problem.

If you live in Japan, China, Korea, or, really ANYWHERE in the world (since this virus is flying everywhere), I would advise you to stay calm and do simple things like washing your hands, getting good, nutritious foods, and sleeping well. It seems that people who are healthy aren’t in very much danger even if they get the Coronavirus. Masks are usually only needed if you have the virus. It will stop coughs and sneezes from spreading the virus to others, but it likely will not protect you from getting sick.

No School and No Public Gatherings

On February 27th, Prime Minister Abe, after feeling the waves of complaints from people around him to try to stop the virus, made the decision to call all schools (elementary, junior high, and high schools) in Japan to close. The reason is that if the schools are open, the virus could go from one kid to the next, then spread to their family and friends. The virus could spread like wildfire.

This closure is optional, however. The schools have their own right to choose if they want to close or not, but most did decide to close. There were many complaints even though the Prime Minister was trying to help the people of Japan. Some kids won’t be able to have a graduation ceremony. Others will be left in their houses while their parents go to work. It was a very complicated decision to make, and there are many people who are against the Prime Minister because of this. But I think it was a wise decision. What do you think?

He also issued an optional warning to not have many public gatherings (festivals, public celebrations, concerts, pro sports, etc.). Like I just said, this is optional as well, but many events were canceled or postponed. Even the Japanese pro baseball games were held without anyone in the stands.

How Should We React To This?

Now, let me ask you: What should we think of the virus? How should we act? How can we try to stop it?

This is my opinion: We shouldn’t freak out over the virus. Sure, it’s bad. People are dying and struggling in hospitals, but I know Someone who is stronger than the virus– stronger than anything, in fact.

No, it’s not Martins Licis, the winner of this year’s Strongman Competition. It’s not Superman, either. 

His name is Jesus. And unlike all of these figures, He loves us. He loves us. He’s for us, and He proved this by coming to this world to die in our place for the punishment we all deserve for turning our backs on God.

We have nothing to be afraid of. Jesus can handle the virus. If he wants, he could just stop everything altogether! But God is most interested in us coming to admit our sins against Him. If we do not turn away from our rebellion and turn towards Him as our Savior, Lord, and Father, we are headed towards His wrath forever in hell. So please let this Coronavirus problem (and all of our problems) remind us that it is allowed by a good God. He wants us to come to Him and to admit our need for His salvation in Christ.

In every situation, we need to remember God is by our side. He loves us and wants us to simply trust in Him for salvation. He can help us through any problem. Whenever it  seems that the things around us are bad, he means it for good — to get us to turn away from things that will not last and to help us to trust in Him for eternal life

Even this virus might be a test for us. A test for Christians to see if they will follow Him even through the hard times and a test for non-believers to see where they will try to find hope. This is a good opportunity for Christians to share the good news. People need God the most in tough times. 

Lastly, I want to share one of my favorite Bible verses with you.

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. Psalm 46:1-3 

So, what do you think about the virus? How is it where you live? What would you like to hear about in Part Two?

Bye, and God bless!!!

*Disclaimer: Some of this information is solely my opinion or general information. If you want to know how to protect yourself from the virus, then I advise you to listen to a doctor or someone who is an expert at these things. 

13 thoughts on “The Virus (Part 1)

  1. Noah, I agree with you whole heartedly on this issue. Here in the United States we are having some of the same issues with people buying masks, hand wipes, and hand sanitizer. But washing hands with soap and water is really the best way to deter this. That and staying home when people don’t feel well. Our God is a big big God and he knew this was going to happen and he knows what’s going to happen and we just trust that he cares for us. Give your dad and mom and siblings a big hug from the Rohwedders.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow! That’s crazy! It seems like even if the coronavirus doesn’t kill off everyone (which I don’t think it will…), people responding to it is a problem.

    Something I would like to know in Part 2: Does your family know many people who have been infected or died? I’m curious because the numbers seem very big, but I wonder whether or not they are big enough that you would know someone.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi, Noah. It was a good post. I especially like how you explained to people that this is in God’s plan — and what it can do for us to question who or what we are trusting in.

    Actually, I am one of the hand sanitizer and mask persons. I can’t believe that it doesn’t help. Also, some professionals say that doesn’t help — but others say it does! I’m going with the ones who say it does!

    Also, if people would just stay home and away from groups for a matter of weeks, that would help. We don’t need to do a lot of things I see people doing. However, I had to go to Kyoto on Saturday, and wow! it was like a ghost town. I even had almost a full bench of seats on the way home on the train. So, there are people who are heeding the policies.

    For part 2, I would like to hear more about just how powerful God is — as illustrated breathtakingly in the old testament and Jesus doing things like telling the storm to be still — and what we are, like as in illustrated in Job — who are you? Do you know where the ice is made? etc.

    Nice work, Noah. You did a good job of explanation of what we should think about our fear as well as giving us a picture of what’s happening in response.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hello Noah,
    You are quite a journalist. Love reading your blogs. Like you I am not fearful of the virus. God is always in control and is sovereign over all. People panic because they do not trust and are fearful of the unknown. It has arrived here in Iowa but so far only 8 cases reported from people who had traveled abroad. I haven’t heard of anything other than be cautious, wash your hands and if you are elderly or have a health issue stay away from crowds. Thank you for giving us your opinions Noah.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Hey Noah!
    I have really enjoyed reading this bog post and sharing it with other people. True, it may be devastating to hear about all of the things that are going on in Japan and China , but your encouragement in the end about God being in control is so . . . well . . . encouraging. All of the people I have shared this with are encouraged also! Thank you so much for giving us all deeper insights on what is happening in Japan right now, and thank you for inspiring us to not fear. 🙂

    Like

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