Saturday, 19 April 2008

Spiritual Viruses and Vitamin C for the Soul: a "By the Way" column for the Medicine Hat News

We hear a lot about viruses at this time of year.

A web-definition describes a virus as an “ultramicroscopic infectious agent that replicates itself only within cells of living hosts.”

Happily, as the days get longer, another flu season of such physical ultramicroscopic invasions is coming to an end.

These, however, aren't the only invasions with which we Christians have to deal. We can also be the victims of spiritual viruses; nasty little agents of the Evil One which invade us as individuals, or our church communities, and which replicate themselves causing all sorts of misery among us.

How do we defend ourselves against them?

In the physical realm, vitamin C is often touted as a good virus fighter. To enhance our defences, we're encouraged to take vitamin C every day.

There is a spiritual equivalent. “C” is for Christ Jesus. Let's call Him Spiritual Vitamin C1. Daily contact with Jesus will build up our defences against all strains of spiritual viruses.

Where do we find Him? “C” is also for Church; the place where Jesus is to be found. That could be C2.

We also find Jesus in the Scriptures (I could be a little cheesy and make that another “C” for Canon, but I won't).

In the Scriptures we find three more spiritual virus fighters; three more C's. Let's call them C3, the Great Confession; C4, the Great Commandment; and C5, the Great Commission. Confess in word and deed that Jesus is the Christ every day. Love God with all our being and love our neighbours as ourselves day in and day out. Work at making disciples daily.

All this done in Jesus' Name and from within His body, the Church, creates a potent spiritual vitamin C complex; a powerful force for keeping spiritual bugs at bay.