Whatever Is Said in the print or broadcast media can have tremendous influence. For example, last year fear swept financial markets everywhere when the media focused on the financial troubles in Asia. Some reports were balanced, but others were not and engendered fear. Then the emotional responses to the news became news.
As I felt myself being pulled into it all, I remembered some friends in what was formerly Yugoslavia. Years ago, I was visiting them during a time of great economic strife. Their currency was losing value daily. My friends, however, told me that they were now eating better than they had in years! The communist government was allowing people to grow food on their own land. More than 90 percent of the food eaten in their neighborhood, they judged, was grown within a few hundred feet of the dinner tables. Remembering this made me realize that there is often much more to a news story than is apparent in the headlines.
"Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill shall be made low." Isa. 40:4 These words from the Bible can encourage us to be less willing to ride waves of emotion. The valleys and mountains—the lows and the highs—of human fears and joys reported in the news need not determine our peace and stability. We can think for ourselves, and be spiritually perceptive as we read and watch the news.