Tuesday, February 18, 2020

Avoiding The Flu and The Coronavirus

Like most of you, we have been closely watching the coronavirus outbreak that began in China. It is becoming a big deal and just a few missteps at this point and it could become a drastically big deal everywhere, including the USA.

China has resorted to draconian measures to restrict the movements in differing degrees of over half their population. According to a New York Times article, as of February 15th, "Residential lockdowns of varying strictness — from checkpoints at building entrances to hard limits on going outdoors — now cover at least 760 million people in China."

Unfortunately, the Chinese government has proved untrustworthy in its reporting of this latest epidemic and many Chinese citizens have been arrested and even "disappeared" for reporting numbers and posting pictures of how the sick are being handled.

While over 73,000 infections and over 1,800 deaths as of Monday evening are scary numbers, with the Chinese government's underreporting of this so far, honestly, the numbers might be much higher. We hope the numbers they are releasing are correct.

I think we ought to take seriously the possibility of this coming to the USA in more of an epidemic fashion. We hope it does not, but information released by the CDC and other organizations makes me think they are preparing for "when" not "if".

If it really hits here, we could see lockdown measures in the USA that could severely limit our movements and cramp our American lifestyle. Since we travel for a living, we could be locked down in any city we visit for days or even weeks IF that were to happen.

The potential damage from coronavirus is horrible and the ongoing damage from the flu is going on right now. According to a news story I read Monday, the flu has already resulted in at least 14,000 deaths in the USA this flu season, including 92 children.

We should probably be taking the flu much more seriously than we are now. We go to church nearly every night. At church, we all shake hands and hug a bunch of necks. By doing so we give the flu and perhaps, the coronavirus in the future, a really great opportunity to spread like wildfire.

We have preached revivals in the middle of flu disruptions more than I care to remember, but twice it was completely snuffed out. I think we should do as I have seen those two churches do with flu outbreaks during a revival. 

Each time the Pastor got up on Sunday night and told the congregation to avoid shaking hands for a few nights and also reminded us to wash our hands and make liberal use of the big containers of hand sanitizer in the lobby and on the altar.

Both times, most of the sick were back in revival by Thursday night and almost no one else got sick during the revival. Not shaking hands worked at stopping the flu and it worked good.

I know that shaking hands is a big part of the way we greet one another, but KJo and I decided years ago that spreading the flu from church to church was not part of our job description. We try really hard to stay healthy.

-One, we do not like being sick. 
-Two, we can not sing, preach and minister at the next church if we catch this church's germs and lose our voices in the process. 
-Three, see the paragraph above, we do not see spreading illness as part of our job.

KJo and I are trying to avoid illness like the plague at this time. In 15 days we are scheduled to travel internationally for vacation mixed with a preaching trip. If we show up at an international airport, either here or abroad, coughing and wheezing, we could be subject to detention and quarantine, being suspected of having coronavirus until proven otherwise. 

That would not be a fun vacation and it would ruin our plans to minister in foreign countries. We are doing our best to avoid anything like that happening by staying as healthy as we can.

We have already experienced one round of flu-like sickness this year and we are determined to stay well. We are on guard against the flu and potential coronavirus infections here and on our international trip. No, we are not going to China, but we are going to be extra careful now and while we are gone.

Are you with me? Are you willing to take extra precautions against catching the flu and the coronavirus should it come to the USA in a big way? 

Wash your hands with soap for at least 20 seconds. Use hand sanitizer when you can not wash your hands. Keep your hands to yourself as much as possible. I believe we can do it.

Thank you for reading today.



  1. Davy, I'm always with YOU !~!

    Frankie Shiflett

  2. Will be praying that the Lord would put a wall of protection around you!
    Be safe! Be well!


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