Wednesday, April 15, 2020

America's State Of Mind--Worried, Depressed, But Not Indifferent

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Both Gallup and Rassmussen took America's temperature this week. Both found that some---perhaps many Americans are worried and depressed.

Speaking in an empty St. Peter's Basilica Sunday, the Pope urged people around the world not to be "indifferent."

Americans are definitely not indifferent. But we are divided, and in search of hope.

Be informed.

Pope Francis said Sunday, "Dear brothers and sisters, indifference, self-centeredness, division, and forgetfulness are not words we want to hear at this time---We want to ban these words forever."

Most of us, even we Protestants, would like to see those words banned forever.

However, in surveys published yesterday both Gallup and Rassmussen found that there is some healing needed.

Just as a coronavirus is responsible for the pandemic of COVID 19, the dishonest press is in great part instrumental in spreading worry and depression.

Actual headlines yesterday included:

  • "New Normal of Social Distancing, Wearing masks will last year...If not longer"
  • "Stay at Home orders stir protests nationwide"
  • "New strain Emerging?"
  • "Food Supply Worries grow..."
  • "IMF: Worst recession since 1930s"
  • "Oprah warns black community that virus...'taking us out'."
  • "Where are the tests?" 
And on and on.

Abraham Lincoln defined the America of his time as a "nation divided against itself"---and quoting Jesus said, a house divided against itself cannot stand, predicting we would not always be divided---at least regarding slavery---because one belief would ultimately prevail.

We are divided over our political views. But we already knew that.

Yesterday, Rassmussen reported that 65% of GOP voters believe reporters are "out to get Trump" as opposed to reporting the news honestly. However, 72% of Democrat voters believe that the press is honestly trying to report the news in "an unbiased" fashion. Voters not affiliated with either political party are evenly divided on the subject.

About 66% of Democrats rate the news "good" to "excellent" in media reporting on the way Trump is handling the coronavirus crises. About 48% of Republicans feel that way.

And 63% of Republicans trust Trump more than the average member of Congress and the average reporter when it comes to the coronavirus.

Among Democrats, 46% trust the reporter more.

Our political house is certainly divided. Come November, one view will prevail over the other. At least for another 4 years.

Gallup has found that the percentage of adults who consider their lives to be "thriving" has dropped considerably.

In a Gallup poll also published yesterday, they found that "US Life Ratings have Plummeted to a 12 Year Low."

Gallup notes that only 48% consider their life to be "thriving"---the lowest level since the Great Recession in December 2008. In October, 55.3% believed their life to be "thriving."

In the poll, Gallup classified Americans as "thriving", "struggling", or "suffering" according to how they rate their current and future lives on a ladder scale with steps numbered 0 to 10. Those who rate their present life a 7 or higher and their life in 5 years an 8 or higher are classified as thriving.

They discovered that the drop in life satisfaction is driven by current life ratings, not future ratings.

Gallup discovered, not surprisingly, that daily stress and worry see unprecedented increases. Stress has risen 14% and worry has risen 21% in the past 12 months. And this is pretty much true in all age groups.

Clearly, most of this is directly related to the coronavirus crises.

Gallup notes that the implications are "plain to see."

They say,
"The unprecedented worsening in daily emotions---decreases in enjoyment and increases in worry and stress ---are likely explained by a compounding set of life altering factors, including American's uncertainty about their physical and financial health in the near future, the pressures of required social isolation, and the chaos for parents attempting to manage work and children out of the home."

The takeaway.

I personally found both these polls, not surprising, but affirming of what many see and feel from our self imposed isolation and personal anxieties.

We've said it before, but it bears repeating; God has allowed this for a purpose. Let Him speak to your heart regarding His plan and purpose.

The political search and destroy campaign is, I guess, to be expected in a divided America. Of course, the far Left sees this as an opportunity to get Trump and clear the way for Joe Biden to become president---and if all we have is the politics, the anxiety and worry and depression is understandable. To be expected.

Consider this:

Psalm 34:16-18

The face of the Lord is against those who do evil,
To cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.

The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears,
And delivers them out of all their troubles.

The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart,
And saves such as have a contrite spirit.

Great challenges cause us to pray more, they bring the Lord's hearing ear and they provide for a joyful experience of deliverance.

Be Informed. Be Prayerful. Be Still...And know that He is God.