Devotion – July 22 – “Good News – Bad News”
“Good news – bad news,” it’s a two-edged sword isn’t it?
A young man calls up his dad to chat. The father says, “I’m sorry, son, but I’m up to my neck in work today. I don’t have time to talk.”
The son replies, “But I’ve got some good news and some bad news for you, Dad.”
The father says, “Okay, but since I’ve got no time now, just give me the good news.”
“Well,” says the son. “The good news is, the air bags work.”
There was a gallery owner who rushed up to one of the artists when he came in to see if any of his paintings had sold. The gallery owner says, “I have some good news and some bad news.”
The artist says, “What’s the good news”
The gallery owner replies, “The good news is that a woman came in here today asking if the price of your paintings would go up after you die. When I told her they would, she bought every one of them!”
The artist is ecstatic, “That’s great! So, what’s the bad news?”
The gallery owner says, “The bad news is, I think the woman was your doctor.”
I can just see the same scenario playing itself out after Easter. One of the disciples encounters a follower of Jesus who lives in a village far enough away from Jerusalem, that he had not gotten the news about Jesus. “I have bad news and good news,” says the disciple.
“What’s the bad news?” the follower of Jesus asks.
“On Friday, Jesus was crucified.”
The follower can’t believe the news. He is overcome with grief. He is so distraught that he can’t ask what the good news might be; not that he thinks there can be any news at this point that would make the good news greater than the bad.
The disciple sees his intense grief and grabs hold of the man, giving him a loving hug. Then he says, “The good news is that on Sunday, Jesus rose from the dead. We have seen him. He is not only alive, he has overcome death!”
In an instant that life crushing bad news is swallowed up by the great news of the resurrection.
One Saturday afternoon our phone rang. Ann answered it. She talked for a minute and then came into the room and said, “Dan, it’s your dad on the phone. Your mom died.”
I never knew how I would react when one of my parents died, and I was surprised by what I said, “I’m so happy for mom.” Now you have to understand that my mother was in the late stages of Alzheimer’s disease. She was at the point where she couldn’t remember who we were, and when we shared a family story with her, she wasn’t able to understand it. This was a woman who lived for her family. She was the one you went to if you needed to know any family history. She was the glue of our family. Yet over the course of her seven year battle with Alzheimer she had lost her strength and her memory. She was a woman trapped in a body and mind that no longer worked.
So when I heard she had died, my first thought, was of her soaring off to heaven, no longer bound by the limitations that she had been imprisoned in.
We are facing a lot of “bad news” lately, but I hope through it all, we learn that oftentimes good things can come out of bad. Sometimes bad events, become a spring board to wonderful new insights. Let us trust that the Lord will make this difficult time in our lives, a teaching moment.
~ Blessings, Dan