If you were in a hospital and needed me as your pastor, and the only way I could get in to minister to you would be to “wear a mask” – I would wear a mask, gladly.
If you or a loved one were in a rehab center, or a nursing home, or an assisted living facility that required me to wear a mask to minister to you – I would wear a mask without question.
I have been a pastor for over 30-years in one church on the Gulf Coast. MANY times, over those years I have had to don a mask, gloves, and a hospital over-gown before entering a room of a patient who was in “isolation” status – in order to minister to them. To me, it is a small “sacrifice” to make for a brother or sister in the Lord. I actually risk my life and health in doing so. But I ask the Lord to protect me, and He does.
If I have to go to my own doctor, for example, and his/her office has a mask policy, I will wear a mask, or find another doctor. It is MY choice at the time. More than likely, I’ll wear the mask. As I’ve already explained, I did it all the time in hospitals and nursing homes, long before COVID. A doctor’s office, filled with sick people, is certainly a legitimate place to be asked to wear a mask for a short while. Not a problem.
My father is 88 years old, lives alone, and has serious underlying health issues. He does his own shopping. I encourage him to wear a mask and gloves when he is in crowds or goes shopping at Wal-Mart, etc. He wears a mask, in those situations. It makes him feel better about possible infection. I’m not so sure it works all that well, nor am I sure it is completely healthy for his breathing situation overall. However, he wanted to do it. So, I encouraged him to do it. I am a big believer in treating adults like adults. Same way in the church that I pastor.
Here’s the thing though. I have a real problem when, for example, a former liquor store owner or bar owner runs for “city council” or “county commissioner” and happens to win, and then, in a crisis situation – they “order” me to wear a mask everywhere except my own home and property. Or they order a church to close its door while allowing big box stores to remain open. That’s where I draw the line. There are too many reliable and renowned health professionals, some that I know personally, who are very clear that wearing these masks like that is not healthy at all, and may actually create more health problems than it solves.
But, a lot of power-hungry people are vying to sit at the “cool-kids” table and flex their newly found “authority.” Problem is, they want to do it with my life and my freedom. And, they want to do it against my faith. I’m sorry … MY BODY, MY CHOICE. Right? Or is that only for “ONE” politically-correct situation in life? I simply choose to not comply in that kind of clear power-grab situation.
I’ve written several articles about this mask topic, and have provided medical school reports, doctor’s testimonies, and the latest news articles that supply peer-reviewed medical study information on the topic. I know that there is info, and loud-irrational-obnoxious screaming out there to the contrary. But most of those reports and screaming are filled with double-talk, and politically driven agendas, and drip with loathing hatred for anyone who dares to “cross” them. That is a signal to me. I disregard their screaming. They have just made themselves irrelevant to me.
COVID is serious. About as serious as the flu, according to the latest infection-to-death ratios. Thanks to increased testing capabilities, we now know this and it is finally being reported upon. Both COVID and flu are deadly to certain demographics of people. Dead is dead. So, please don’t tell me “this is not the flu!” I know what this “is.” I’m not an idiot. And, I know what it is not. It’s not the “black death.” It never has been. In 2017 when over 80,000 people died in the US for flu alone, not a soul was required to wear a mask, shut down their business, shut down their church, or go to jail for “non-compliance.” Of course, 2017 was not the most important presidential election year in world history either. There. I said it. I know you were thinking it.
I expose myself all the time to disease and death as a Pastor. Both in the U.S. and in third world countries. I have been so sick, I’ve been on the brink of death (literally) several times. In each instance the Lord preserved my life. And, He will continue to do so until He is done with me, and ready for me to come to Him. I walk by faith, while at the same time practicing all the safety and hygiene methods that I know how to do and that make sound medical sense as best as we know it. That’s all we can do, without living in constant fear and anxiety. I refuse to live that way.
We live in a fallen world. Death is all around us. 150,000 people around the world die each and every day. We will all die. And we will all answer to our Creator for what we did with the claim that Jesus Christ has upon our lives – and His gracious offer of salvation.
Some will say, “I don’t believe in all that.” It doesn’t matter. A fish at the bottom of a 5-mile-deep trench in the ocean floor doesn’t “believe” in humans either. Yet, there are 7 billion of us that live above his head, along with 25 million species of other life-forms that he doesn’t “believe in.” What we “believe” doesn’t matter at all. What matters is the evidence of thousands of years of fulfilled prophecies (in only one book on the planet), an old rugged cross, a crucified savior, and an empty tomb. Not to mention the birth of the church and 2,000 years of preaching the Gospel of salvation and billions of people saved.
Wear a mask if you want to – or “need” to. There are legitimate needs for masks for certain demographics, and in certain situations. That’s a FACT. But do NOT let power-crazy, scared-of-every-shadow, politically correct ninnies DEMAND that you wear a mask – just because they can. No one has a right to tell me how much oxygen I can breathe.
I have a feeling that there will be many churches and businesses, in the future, that will find they lost an awful lot of members and business when this is over. All because they so willing jumped for a seat at the cool kids table – and stomped all over your God-given rights to do it. Yes – even churches, and “pastors.”
We are now getting several people coming to our church because their pastors closed their churches when there was no order to do so, and they didn’t even live in a clear “danger zone.” They just shut the doors. And when they did “open” months later, they zoned off seats and laid down “social-distance” lines, spread out chairs to exactly 6 feet (the magic number of life and death), took all the hymnals and Bibles out of the pews, and handed out masks and even preached in masks – all to make sure they obeyed the politically correct mantra. YUP. I’d have left that kind of church as well. Not a question. We need men and women of God among us. Not politically correct lemmings.
We are living in prophetic times, people. It’s time we awakened to that fact. For the first time since the birth of the church, most of the world’s citizens could not find a church anywhere on Resurrection Sunday. The doors were closed. FOR THE VERY FIRST TIME in world history. In the year 2020 and never before. Think on that. The one day that represents the destruction of Satan, and Satan closed the doors with an “unseen” virus – and “pastors” complied. Many were under no legal obligation to do so.
In this regard, we stand ashamed before our fathers before us – all the way back to the first century – many of whom faced the lions and crucifixion simply because they were ordered to close their churches and their mouths. But they refused. But they counted their faith in Jesus Christ and the Kingdom to come, more valuable than their present little dot of earthly existence.
Again. Our body. Our choice.
Our faith. Our choice.
We answer to the Lord alone at the end of it all. And there will be an end – for all. Like it or not.
And you know what else? If you disagree with me. That’s okay. I always treat adults like adults (if they act like adults). Your life, your choice. See? That’s not so hard. Is it?
ASSOCIATION OF AMERICAN PHYSICIANS AND SURGEONS
CONCLUSION of lengthy study and article:
“As described above, the wide use of masks by healthy people in the community setting is not supported by current evidence and carries uncertainties and critical risks.”
“Medical masks should be reserved for health care workers. The use of medical masks in the community may create a false sense of security, with neglect of other essential measures, such as hand hygiene practices and physical distancing, and may lead to touching the face under the masks and under the eyes, result in unnecessary costs, and take masks away from those in health care who need them most, especially when masks are in short supply.”
“Masks are effective only when used in combination with frequent hand-cleaning with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.”
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