Lately you can hardly turn on the television without hearing news of a tornado terrorizing some area of the country. The Weather Channel appears to be playing a marathon of the twister scene from The Wizard of Oz. Why do they always have to have some poor guy standing in the middle of the dangerous weather? What crime did this reporter commit to be given this assignment?
STATION MANAGER: Jim, there’s a deadly tornado heading toward Wichita, and we want you to go stand directly in the middle of it.
JIM: What did I do? Is this about the fish in the microwave again?
SM: You’re darn right it is. And that had better be the last time my muffin tastes like salmon.
JIM: Couldn’t I just report this behind the safety of my news desk?
SM: Truthfully, yes. But we need drama and excitement. In fact, this time you will dress up like Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz. When the storm hits, you’ll try to get into the storm cellar, but you will be knocked unconscious. We will then begin a dream sequence, where your fellow reporters will be other characters from the movie.
JIM: Can’t I just buy you a new microwave or something?
SM: It’s too late. The fishy smell has permeated every fiber of the building, right down to the asbestos. Don’t worry; we’ll give you a raincoat. Try not to die.
It’s impossible to watch The Weather Channel around young children. When I try to turn it on for 1/8 of a second to see the weather forecast, they get glimpses of destruction and devastation. As a result, my children have become obsessed with tornadoes. When my four-year-old asked for more tornadoes in his salad, it took me a minute to realize he meant tomatoes.
The other news stations are far worse, with constant reporting of wars, crimes, famines, scandals, and just about any bad news you could possibly report. In this evil age, why bother? Each news report is the same, with slight variations on the people and places. They might as well say, “Good evening. The world has gone to hell in a hand basket.”
Can you imagine a reporter delivering only positive news? When John the Baptist was in prison, he sent disciples to ask Jesus if he was The One. Jesus employed the world’s first reporters, and their assignment was to bring GOOD NEWS back to John.
Matthew 11:4 Go back and report to John what you hear and see: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is preached to the poor.
Notice that Jesus did not ask them to badmouth God’s people or to focus on the evil works of the day. His instructions were to report the good things that were happening to people who believe in him. If you want drama and excitement, how about people getting healed and delivered?
Our energy would be much better spent on spreading the good news. The worldly news only tells one side of the story. Here’s the news report I’m waiting for:
REPORTER: Let’s go now to Jim, who’s standing in the middle of a tornado in Wichita, Kansas. Jim, are you still with us?
JIM: Yes, I’m still here!
REPORTER: Thanks to your super duper Weather Channel raincoat?
JIM: No, thanks to God. I just witnessed a miracle here. The people of Kansas prayed, and the tornado disappeared!
REPORTER: What’s that huge cloud formation we’re seeing behind you?
JIM: In all my years of meteorology, I’ve never seen anything like it. Something is coming in the sky. Something glorious! It’s..it’s Jesus! He’s back! This is unbel….
REPORTER: Jim? Jim?