THE MIRROR, THE LIPSTICK, AND THE JANITOR FROM HELL

So we have all these people refusing to wear face coverings and thus spreading the disease.  No matter how nice you ask, no matter how well you reason, no matter how authoritative you speak, they still resist claiming personal rights, fear-mongering hoax, exercising freedom, and even questioning science.  This is more than stupidity, more than evil, and more than crazy.  It is obstinate through and through.

I think about all the arguments I have heard and offered.  All the inconsistencies and contortions it takes to justify this obstinance is mind blowing.

We have theologians claiming this scars the image of God.  Well, it does, actually.  And so does sin.  So does harming your neighbor.  I keep saying we will know you are Jesus disciples by the LOVE you show one another – the self denying love of wearing a mask during the pandemic.

I keep thinking about the freedom lovers claiming this infringes our rights and freedoms.  And I wonder where this argument was during the Blitzkrieg when Allies, the freedom fighters in that conflict, all turned off their lights at night so the bombers could not see where to drop the bombs.  Certainly we had the right to turn on our lights, but we all got on the same page to defeat a common enemy, and when the conflict was over, we all went back to using our lights as we liked.

I think of those claiming this is all fear mongering media hype, and I wonder what channel you got that idea from.  This is the information age, by the way.  And even before the information age, information got around.  Maybe not as fast, and maybe not always as fact checked, but it got around plenty, and there really is no stopping it.  However ill-informed you think the message is, the only way the facts of so many lives being threatened is if you are just a brain in a vat.  I have TRUST in my fellow man, certainly in my wife who is a frontline nurse and is testing babies and burying them at her work everyday.  Also the doctors I go to church with… I trust them too, and there is unanimous shared opinion that the precautions are necessary there too.

I think of those worried about the economy, and I think do we kowtow to Mammon?  Look, I am also concerned about the economy.  I notice, on the one hand, that our political system dragged its heels in response to pandemic right up until the point when ignoring it tanked the stock market!  Wow!  Ignoring it and wishing it away is not good for the economy!  On the other hand, AS A CHRISTIAN, I see an opportunity for our economy to become more of a sharing of wealth rather than a fight for it.  How about our social/economic engineers go to work on that?

I think about all the confusion our society already deals with due to our official “separation of church and state” – thank you Thomas Jefferson!  That notion was only born after the terrible separation of science and religion before it.  Now we have a separation of science and politics, and that kind of willful stupidity is just weird.

All of this has me thinking of murder-suicides.  You know that level of angst over your ex-life (yeah, I said “life” not wife, but there is a strong overlap there… anyway that angst) where your reach the point you say, “If I can’t have her, no one can” – so you kill her and yourself in anger?  Yeah, that phenom.  You know it?  Of course you do.

I think we have something of that same spirit here.

Legion was easy to cast out.  Jesus steps off the boat and this demon comes falling down pleading for mercy at the mere sight of Jesus.  But the “son of the father” (bar Abbas) is one the disciples cannot cast out.

This kind only comes out through prayer.

All the motorcycle helmets, seatbelts, hardhats, steel-toe boots, airbags, fire extinguishers, home-security alarms, passwords, speed limits, and safety nets must be really chapping some hides!  Did you enter a password on your computer before you got on line to tell the world not to wear a mask???

All of this has me wishing for the janitor.  You know the one.  I don’t even need to remind you.  It’s one of those stories (whether based in historical fact or not) which has become a modern parable, an urban legend, like the lady who gave her cat a bath and dried it in the microwave oven (I haven’t heard that one since I was a kid in the 1980s), or the preacher who disguised himself as a homeless bum and tricked his own church only to discover they didn’t care for bums.  This story is the one about the little girls in the fourth grade who start putting lipstick on in the girls bathroom as school and leaving their kiss marks on the mirror.  After so much reasoning and demanding failed to change their behavior, the janitor calls them all in to watch him use a mop and toilet water to clean the mirror off!

I wonder if maybe all our doctors and nurses should skip wearing masks at work.  It would be deadly, of course, and they know it first hand better than the rest of us, but they could sure do it.  Maybe even the surgeon could eat spaghetti while performing open heart surgery!  After a couple of weeks, when all the doctors and nurses are either dead or too sick to work, do you think the anti-maskers will change?

No.

I don’t.

They are beyond reason.

This kind only comes out with prayer.

Let us pray.

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