Our world has changed. Since 2020, a whole new lexicon of words have been introduced that makes conversations more delicate. For example, the word "mask" before 2020 was immediately associated with costume parties, pro wrestling, and the Phantom of the Opera. In many of my earlier conversations as a youth pastor, when I mentioned masks, I was usually referring to a spiritual or psychological condition describing folks who were not being honest about their true feelings or identity. In many youth talks, masks were an allusion to how students often "put on a show" to get along with the crowd: a coping tactic to "mask" how they truly felt about the struggles of life. In those days, I would encourage teens to, "Drop your mask! It's OK to admit and confess we're not perfect." (And let's not forget those "backward masking" seminars where "researches" spun LP albums backward on record players to uncover "hidden messages" designed to secretly control society!)
TODAY, the word "mask" is almost exclusively associated with a pandemic and the politics which has accompanied it.
Perform an internet search on the word "masks" and see how many articles and images are related to Covid-19.
I miss the days of masks being associated with super heroes, cheesy rock bands, and our willingness to be honest with one another, and our God.
As the mask mandates disappear, remember that for 2 years, our thoughts were realigned. As I look back, it almost seems like something was orchestrated! "Someone" wanted our conversations to focus on how we needed to cover up, lockdown, keep our distance, and "keep from threatening anyone with non-compliance."
Does this sound political? Or isn't it really spiritual and psychological?
It still seems today that questioning "the narrative" is verboten! Our society was required to trust only a certain group of "experts" and the media was their echo chamber. If someone had an alternative theory for how to treat this disease, even if they were certifiably credentialed, they were summarily banned, canceled, and censored. (It really reminds me of the age old "Creation / Evolution Debate." There is NO WAY that "academia" will permit the teaching of "intelligent design" even if it is presented by a formerly published evolutionist -- it's just not allowed in the "scientific cabal ...er, uh; community."
We all know that a "deep state" was hell bent on killing Jesus Christ. They conducted meetings in secret, violated laws, cajoled and harassed sympathizers, shouted down opposition, threatened and intimidated political powers. And because we know that the ways of the world are always built upon a stronghold of lies, Christianity always advocates the principles of scriptures which promote transparency and "open conversation." "But we have renounced the hidden things of shame, not walking in craftiness nor handling the word of God deceitfully, but by manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God." -2 Corinthians 4:2
Love the brethren & avoid bandwagons!
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