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A touch of the ‘flu!

There is nothing new about ‘Influenza’! It’s symptoms were recorded by Hippocrates around 400 BC, and since then there have been many pandemics. There was a recorded outbreak in which many people died in 1580, spreading from Russia to Africa and Europe.

From the 17th to the 19th. centuries many people died, with an especially severe pandemic in 1830 to 1833. The most lethal was in 1918 to 1919, called the Spanish ‘flu, when it is believed between 70 to 100 million died in what has been called “the greatest medical holocaust in history” – more than double those killed in World War 1.

Then in more recent times there was the Asian ‘flu pandemic of 1957-58, followed by the Hong Kong ‘flu in 1968-70. The Avian or Bird ‘flu has been around since the 1990’s. The most recent is the Swine ‘flu with its beginnings in Mexico earlier this year.
Hundreds of thousands of people die each year around the world from various strains of influenza.

We are blessed to have new drugs available to lesson the impact, and the annual ‘flu injection is a wise precaution.
It is difficult to avoid infection, so after taking all precautions we need to also be ready to leave this world for the next. I often say to folk I meet, “I am going to heaven, and I want you to come with me”!

The Lord Jesus Christ has opened heavens door for us by dying on a Roman cross as a sacrifice for our sins. He said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me” (John 14:6). “Come to Me, all you who labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest” (Mat. 11:28). In Him we can find forgiveness for our sins, rest of heart and peace with God.

One day we must leave this world, and to those who accept His forgiveness and His free gift of eternal life He says, “Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also” (John 14:1-3).

Albert Fairweather

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