If you have not detected that we are surviving in a negative world, you just have not been paying attention. These destructive influences have been especially evident from the global outbreak of the Covid-19 pandemic, to the war in Ukraine and the recent floods in KwaZulu Natal, South Africa, says cleric-cum-leather designer and musician Taurai Karungaire.
Not missing a single higher cognitive process as he emits his opinion on the ongoing misfortune, Karungaire, who is a devoted cleric at Bethel Koinoia Ministries International, noted the never ending harsh economic crisis in Zimbabwe as another black eye adding in the outlook of bereavement befalling the modern day society.
Not sweeping anything under the rug, what hangs in the balance is the future.
With sickness, unemployment, divorce, famine, human and drug trafficking, gender based violence, child abuse, rape, suicide, murder in the form of femicide and genocide, as well as natural disasters like earthquakes, volcanoes and tornadoes intensifying — it can be clearly seen that, over time, the pressures of the world, if allowed, can entirely steal the love and joy from people’s livelihoods.
Being at the leading edge of inspiration, Karungaire urges people to think off their feet and be extra vigilant, bold and brave to par up and turn off the animosities inflicted on the universe.
“Matthew 24 verse 12 reads, ‘And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold’. Jesus said this would be a characteristic of the end times, where the negative things going on around us — not necessarily in us — would cause the love of many to grow cold,” Karungaire.
“The word “wax” used in this scripture is really significant, it goes back to the way candles are made.
“A wick is dipped into hot wax and then taken out and allowed to cool off for a few seconds, leaving a thin layer of wax.
“The process is repeated hundreds of times until the wick is buried deep within the wax.
“The same is true with the heart, if we take our eyes off Jesus and focus on the evil of this world and our circumstances — then, little by little, the layers of negativity harden around our hearts — and the love for God and one another waxes cold.
“So, how do we stay positive in a negative world? Joshua 1 verse 9 reads, ‘Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest’. Here, the Lord was speaking to Joshua, who was taking over from Moses — a hard act to follow.
“The words ‘be strong and of good courage and not to be afraid or dismayed’, are opposing forces — if you are afraid and dismayed, then you are not strong and of good courage. These words also counteract each other, so you’ve got to do two things and resist two things.
“The word dismay means ‘to fill with dread or apprehension; daunt’ (American Heritage Dictionary). Can you say you have fought apprehension about the future? Have the problems facing you or the nation seemed daunting? If so, you have been dismayed.”
Totally wrapped up in taking a positive view on proceedings, Karungaire encourages people who eventually quit after standing firm on their principles for the better part of their lives, to have no limits on how long they are going to believe in divine intervention.
Defending the choice of staying positive in a negative world, the Karoi-born cleric stressed that if people persevere in the word of God and his promises, trusting the process — they will be encouraged, and all they seek and aspire to be will eventually fall into place.
Chirpy and optimistic, Karungaire said if the society can maintain its concentration on Jesus Christ and his word instead of focusing on how many times it has had glitches or succumbed in the face of defeat and midst of a storm — there is a possibility of seeing people walking on the water of circumstances.
He stressed that when the doctor diagnoses a patient with cancer, a boss tells employees they are being retrenched, or a spouse decides leave their marriage — there is room to stay positive, hence taking a deliberate effort is a matter of life-or-death.
“Biblical, Peter is a good example of what happens when we take our eyes off Jesus and his word,” Karungaire said.
“Matthew 14 verse 28 to 30 reads, ‘And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water. And he said, Come. And when Peter was coming down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.
“But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, ‘Lord, save me’. As soon as Peter got his eyes off Jesus and looked at the stormy sea, he began to sink. His focus changed — instead of focusing on the promise of Jesus, Peter adjusted on the circumstances.
“You need to recognise that Satan is using the evil and negative things of this world to discourage you, even if they are not your personal problems.
“You can get discouraged watching politics, reading the newspaper, and listening to the news.
“If you don’t resist this, it will cause you to be discouraged and dismayed, and worst of all, your love for God will grow cold (Mathew 24 verse 12).
“The Bible says in Isaiah 26 verse 3, ‘The Lord will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed upon him because he trusts in him’.
“Our peace is linked directly to what we think. At the turn of the century, we are plugged into this planet like no group of Christians has ever been — reading, listening, and watching the same ungodliness as the world. Instead of wondering why we get the same results — it’s simple — either we garbage in or out!”
This year and forth, unless believers have a deliberate plan to encourage themselves in the Lord, it will be a huge ask for them to be bucked up.
At the peak of wretchedness, it is not normal to be encouraged — rather it is normal to be discouraged.
Even though it might seem abnormal to be strong and of good courage, it is certainly doable — if the word immensely used as a guideline is God’s.
Grant Moyo is a prolific writer, innovative media personality, entrepreneur and a creative artist who is passionate about using his creative mind for the betterment of society. Follow him on Twitter: @TotemGrant