My neighbor and his wife want to be faithful Christians, but find their disposition very negative toward people wearing masks during the Covid pandemic. They asked for my help. Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth. The “name of the Lord” is an abbreviation for all there is about Him and for His creation and Word that reveal Him to us. Here is some help:
- Go for the gold. “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” If I want others to be concerned for what I fear or care about (and I do!) then I need to care about them.
- Size up the situation. “With the measure you use it will be measured back to you.” What if the mask wearers are equally upset by those who are not? Knowing that God provides for us exceedingly abundantly beyond all we can ask or think and that He makes all things work together for good orients, enables, and inspires us to be gracious toward others as God is infinitely gracious with us.
- Consider the parable of a drowning person that I often use. Would we expect any drowning person to be concerned at all for anyone else, or even hear what others are trying to say, even if those people are drowning, too? But once we have been taken into the life boat and treated to recovery by life savers, wouldn’t we want to stay and help rescue the others who are still panicked and desperate?
If we find ourselves angry, it is because we are thinking too much and too highly of ourselves. If we are afraid and panicked, it is because we feel like we are sinking into death. God brings down the proud but raises up the lowly. His mercy is on those who fear Him, who hope in His Word. The truth about our corrupt human condition urges us to remain in the truth of God’s promises to us that regenerate our souls and move us to love by the power of the Holy Spirit, even as we are loved by the Lord Jesus.