Rumors


It is mid-November as I write this article, and the most pressing topic in the news, as well as in everyone's conversation is the swine flu or the influenza A(H1N1).

The outbreak was first detected on March 18, 2009, in Mexico City. Before it was over, hundreds of Mexicans succumbed to the disease, and most of the city had to be closed down. It didn't take long for the disease to be spread to other parts of the world, and on June 11, 2009 the World Health Organization declared the outbreak to be pandemic.

During the summer, the virus seemed to have become dormant, but with the onset of fall, it has returned with a vengeance. Governments race to purchase the vaccine, but not enough can be produced on time. Because of this, in countries like Canada, the serum has been offered only to people at high risk. Those who are considered "low risk" will only be vaccinated when enough of the vaccine becomes available. Meanwhile, several of those labelled "not at risk" have already died as a result of the disease.

The resurgence of H1N1 has also resulted in a flood of rumors, especially across the Internet. Here are a few common ones:

- The swine flu was created by pharmaceutical companies so that they could make billions of dollars off of the vaccines.

- The government is trying to depopulate the world.

- Flu vaccines are contaminated.

- Eating eggs causes swine flu.

- H1N1 vaccine contains pork.

The rumors fly unabated, and many people now are not sure if the vaccine is really safe. In case of doubt, I would encourage you to visit the World Health Organization website to know the real facts about this disease: http://www.who.int/csr/disease/swineflu/en/ 

The fact remains that the swine flu is not an imagined disease. It is real, and it does indeed kill young and old in all corners of our planet. If you think you may be suffering from this disease, go to your local hospital. And once the vaccine becomes available to the general public, you can be inoculated against it.

But no one can or will force you to take the vaccine. You are the only one who can make that choice!

The choice is also yours as to whether or not you will believe the rumors that are flying about.

As I reflect on all of this over a cup of hot herbal tea, I realize that the world has not changed at all since sin entered it. The majority still do not believe in sin, and many of the ones who do, believe rumors that they can save themselves!

If we look at the facts however, we will see that this entire world is in pain. People are unable to forgive one another. Divorce is on the rise, as is theft, murder, and terrorism. And the list could go on and on!

If you don't believe in sin, please walk the streets of Calcutta or the slums in Nairobi. If these places are too remote for you, visit your local prison and listen to the stories of the convicts. Visit the shelters where women are hiding from husbands who are beating them. Visit foster homes where children have been abused and/or abandoned by their own parents. Visit the homeless and listen to what they can tell you.

This world is sick with an illness called sin, but we become so absorbed with ourselves sometimes that we don't even notice those who are truly hurting and suffering. It makes you wonder why faith is so much more alive in countries where Christians are persecuted or are suffering loss.

The fact is this: Sin touches each of us, and there is only one solution: Jesus Christ!

"Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned." (Rom 5:12 NIV)

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." (John 3:16 NIV)

It still isn't too late to get God's inoculation. He is the only one who can truly save you!

Rob Chaffart

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