The response to COVID-19 by the world has been full of confusion! Due to the unfortunate fact that 2020 is a Presidential Election year, matters of public health have become politicized in ways that have expanded the dividing lines that pull our country apart.
The use of masks has unfortunately become a topic of confusion and contention in the United States.
Interestingly, the American spirit hasn’t changed much throughout history. During the 1918 Spanish Flu Pandemic masks became a part of the strategy employed to limit the spread of the flu. While many complied, many others refused. People complained the masks were ineffective, uncomfortable, bad for business, or unnecessary because officials were not complying with the mandate for masks.
This story sounds all too familiar, right?
If you’re like me, you may be ready to throw up your hands and give up in the fight against COVID-19 because we’re all feeling more than exasperated with the inconsistent and oftentimes contradictory information that is being delivered at lightning-fast speed.
At the start of the outbreak, it was reported that masks were ineffective and should be reserved for medical professionals only. Now, many states including my own have mandated face masks for almost all indoor public spaces. We are all feeling a bit of information whiplash due to this drastic change in approach that came about in just a few short weeks.
Masks have become a political issue, but, truly—wearing them is intended to be a neutral practice to promote public health. There can be a tendency in America for our faith to get intertwined with our politics.
This is a moment for us to break the tether that has tied Christians to a specific political affiliation. Let’s begin to be people that realize that our faith compels us to live in accordance to the Bible rather than offer our unquestioned alliance to specific institutions.
As we all navigate the balance of being responsible citizens and maintaining our sense of freedom, which is vital to the health of our nation, it is important that we make decisions guided by the lens of our faith first.
What then does our faith say about our responsibility to comply with mandates during a Pandemic? Let’s examine four ways we can apply biblical principles to the question of masks:
Photo Credit: ©Getty Images/Stevan Ovicigor