I’ve heard the conspiracy theories:
“To wear one is to participate in the Great Social Engineering Experiment.”
“Wearing one is part of a Satanic Plot.”
“A mask causes us to lose our identities so we can be herded like sheep to be made into Soylent Green.”
I know the “effectiveness” arguments, too:
“Yes, wearing a mask can help contain the virus for those who may have The Covid.”
“No, masks aren’t effective and look stupid.”
What’s a Christian to do?
This is what I’m doing and it has a lot to do with my last trip to Austin.
Because I live in the conservative Hill Country, I don’t worry about city issues too much. Not many who live here do. The city people have their riots, their homeless, their viruses and authoritarian government.
We worry about hitting deer with our cars and the city people moving here.
In other words, I was not in the habit of mask-wearing. Didn’t even have one in my vehicle.
Then I went to Trader Joe’s in our Capitol City. Everyone was wearing a face-covering while standing in a Disneylandish line waiting to get in. And there was no ride to look forward to. Just organic tofu.
I felt bad.
I did not want to be perceived as a rebel, or selfish, or as a potential grandma killer, so I asked a shopper if she had an extra one. She looked around and politely said that she didn’t.
I went back to my car and found a dirty sock in my gym bag. I saw online how to fashion one into a mask.
Thankfully, no one looked cross-eyed at me, nor did they give me the Woke-Scold stare-down like I received at Costco when I coughed into my elbow and a cotton-pants-wearing-all-natural lady’s eyes bugged out of her head.
Then my daughter caught The Virus and I moved out of my home into my office for two weeks, even though I tested negative.
I then started wearing a mask when getting gas or making a quick run to the store. I put extra masks in my car. I even ordered a pack of fashionable black Biden-Wear from Amazon.
I may think masks are useless and ineffective in fighting coronavirus, but the opinion of those who believe the popular media have bought the line. To help others not to stumble, I choose to wear one for conscience’s sake; theirs, not mine.
When in Rome, do as the Romans do.
As a Christian, as much as it depends on me, I’m called to live at peace with everyone, and to consider others better than myself.
There’s another Biblical reason. In my own “Covid-19 translation,” the apostle Paul wrote this:
“Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law…so as to win those under the law. To those not having the law I became like one not having the law…so as to win those not having the law. To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. To those who wear masks, I wear a mask. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.”(1 Corinthians 9:19-23)
And yes, I’ll still wash my hands and keep my distance.
Unless you need a hug.