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Monday, March 15, 2021

Are You Tired of Wearing Masks Yet?

By Jim Faughn

     During the past year, the “mask policy” has changed multiple times. National, state, and local governments have mandated a variety of changes in policy. These changes have often been difficult to understand and even more difficult to enforce. There have been instances when one set of policies has conflicted with others.
    Various levels of government have not been alone in adopting confusing and conflicting policies. Businesses, churches, and other organizations have also felt the need to adopt their own “mask policies.”
    All of this has even filtered down to the family and individual levels. Some families and individuals refuse to wear a mask and/or require others to do so in their presence while others make wearing a mask mandatory for themselves and others.
    Wherever you are in all of this, I’m guessing that most of us can agree that we are growing very tired of wearing masks and seeing other people wearing them. Most of us are also probably tired of making decisions about masks or even hearing about them.
    I would like to suggest a new “mask policy.” I think that this policy would, if implemented, make the world a much better place. Here’s the policy:
Take all of the masks off and destroy them!
    Before you think that I’ve completely lost what little sense I have, let me quickly explain that the masks I have in mind have nothing to do with the pandemic about which all of us are concerned. In fact, these masks have nothing to do with any disease that might be transmitted from one individual to others.
    The masks I have in mind are not even literal, material masks. They are “masks” worn by people who do not want others to see who they really are.
    I think that you know what I have in mind. These masks allow people to adapt their personality, their “beliefs,” their morals, and a host of other things to whatever environment in which they find themselves. For ex-ample, I could choose to wear my “good old boy mask” when I’m out with friends and switch to my “faithful Christian mask” on Sunday or when I’m around religious people. (Sometimes that switch can be made in just the hours between Saturday night and Sunday morning.)
    Would we not all be much better off if we would take off all of our masks and be consistent in what we do and say? How much easier and more pleasant would our lives be, for example if, when I tell you some-thing, you didn’t have to try to figure out what I really meant?
    As you consider an answer to that question, you may want to think about something you may have already heard before. Our English word hypocrite is derived from a Greek word. That Greek word that referred to an actor on a stage.
    An interesting fact about those Greek actors is that one of them could play various parts in a production. All he had to do was to change masks. That enabled one actor to portray characters who were happy, sad, mean, kind, etc.
    I’m praying that it will not be very much longer before we can communicate and socialize with others without concerns about wearing a mask in order to minimize the chances of transmitting some disease. I’m praying even more that each one of us (including me) will choose to be transparent and consistent. Beyond that, it is my prayer that all of us who wear the name of Christ have as our goal living in such a way that we are transparently and consistently honoring Him.
- Jim Faughn, a retired preacher, serves as an elder for the Central Church of Christ in Paducah KY.  He may be contacted through the congregation's website: http://www.centralchurchofchrist.org (from A Legacy of Faith)
 

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