I am pretty much a rule follower. When I go to the store I can’t go in the out door, and can’t go out the in door when I leave. Speed limits? I pretty much follow them, well maybe not heading into Detroit because I don’t want to get rear ended! If there are instructions on cooking, I read them and follow them. Driving into the church parking lot, it would be so easy to just turn left at the Exit Only sign, especially when I am just dropping something off or going to park in that area. But I just can’t. The sign says, thus the rule is, “Exit Only!”
I am trying my best to social distance at this time. I do drop off needed items at homes and go to the building to get the mail and work on some things. Am doing good at not going to the stores more than I need to? Actually I went two weeks without going to Sam’s, when I knew there may be a shortage of things and I should go every other day in case they had those scarce items. When I go out, I have gloves in my pocket if I need them and a Clorox wipe in my hand. I maintain six feet distance, ten if I need to talk to someone. So, I am doing my part.
When I did step into the store the other day, I put my mask on before I left the car. I am not a big fan of them, though I do have a couple of nice masks that were made for me, that I do appreciate. So, in I went with my mask, like a good, little, obedient, rule follower. This is the first time I had been back in this store, Meijer, since the “wear a mask” mandate came down. I saw all kinds of masks as I social distanced my way down the aisles. I also saw in my short time there, almost a dozen people without masks! What?! That is the rule you are to follow! I am not sure if I was appalled, jealous, or indignant. Probably a little of each.
When it comes to following Christ there seems to be a lot of rules. And as I said, I am pretty good at following them. Probably would have made a pretty good--no great-- Pharisee. But over the years it seems like all of the rules boil down to one, though it is phrased different ways. Think of others better than yourself. We have freedom, but we give it up to serve and care for others. The “Golden Rule.” It’s all about others. You are not to see your own good but the good of others. Submission to Christ, to others. THE rule: Eliminate self. Crucify self. Die to self. Any way you phrase it, the point is the same, you are dead! If we follow that one rule, the rest disappear.
Jesus gave us the example of emotionally, spiritually, and physically dying. If we claim to be a Christian, by definition a follower of Christ, we commit to die. Why would I not wear a mask if my concern was the effect I could have on others?
What effect does our not dying to self have on others? Greater than we may know. Take the time to put on the mask, maybe physically, especially metaphorically, when you are around others.
Wearing a mask,