Numbers and stats of despair and hope

Day 11. All this talk about numbers – numbers of infected, numbers of deaths, percentage comparisons to the flu, all these statistics – they depersonalize the tragedy that is this pandemic. The stats and the various interpretations we hear from different analysts do not and can not convey to those of us who are healthy and cloistered in the safety of our homes the true insidious character of this pandemic. That quickly changes, however, the first time you open a newspaper or read on the internet about someone you know who has become critically ill or has died from the Covid 19 virus.

Having grown up in New York City and with children , grandchildren and most of our family living in the New York metropolitan area, I follow closely the situation there. Each day, as the crisis there worsens, I learn of friends and acquaintances who have contracted the virus; some of whom are so critically ill that requests to pray for them fill social media and WHATSAPP chats. I am talking about people who were healthy, vibrant, living full lives, with families – and suddenly they are in critical condition fighting for their lives or worse.

So quite frankly I don’t want to hear anymore about “statistics”. I don’t want to hear anymore about how the virus primarily kills people over 60. I don’t want to be told anymore that the percentages do or don’t equal those of the flu. I do not want to hear anymore about how one country’s stats do or not compare with another. All that information is too sterile.

I want to focus on people. Real people like you and me. This killer is real. It is personal. It is killing good, healthy , vibrant people. People who should not be dying. We need to understand that. We need to be there for these people, for their families.

In my heart and mind I know that He has a plan. As I frequently tell my kids, the Almighty does not have to tell us what His plan is. What we need to do is pray; pray for all the people who have been stricken with this terrible disease, pray for families that are suffering, pray for those who who have lost their jobs or been forced to close their businesses. Pray for mankind.

And then we need to act. We need reach out. We need to help. There are plenty of people out there who need our help.

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