After 6 weeks of pretty total seclusion from the outside world, I finally mustered up the courage to venture out. I must admit that even though I’ve been happily sewing masks for healthcare workers and others, I felt a little silly putting one on myself. But there was no way I could go stand in a line of people without it.
So off I went, into the post office, feeling certain that I looked as ridiculous as I felt. A gentleman passed me by and as he approached I smiled big at him thankful for a little outside contact. When he didn’t reciprocate, I remembered that my smile, like a masked bandit, was under cover. He probably just thought I was staring at him! To save face, I quickly spoke up and in my most cheerful voice said, “Hi, how are you doing today?” He seemed a bit surprised but answered in kind and we were both on our way.
There was something about the realization that I was having to cover my smile in order to go out into public that broke me a little bit that day. How could I be friendly to people without my smile? I penned the following words while pondering this conundrum...
Behind the mask, I’m just a little scared of you;
I wonder if you’re a little scared of me too.
Behind the mask I offer you an encouraging smile;
But you can’t see it as we stay apart for a while.
Behind the mask I can still share joy and love;
My voice can sing out for the one sent from Heaven above.
Behind the mask you’re still you, I’m still me;
Our faces may be covered but our hearts can still be seen.
Behind the mask I know the victory has already been won;
No veil can separate us from the Hope of our Father’s Son.
The days we are living in are unlike any most of us have ever seen. But the situations around us do not define who we are. The enemy we are all afraid of right now is the same enemy we have been waging war against since sin entered the world. Today it’s in the form of a never before seen virus. But whether it’s a personal sin or a global pandemic, we know that what we are fighting against is the result of life in a world saturated in sin. The enemy is the evil one. The serpent. The snake. But just like our enemy remains the same for all of history, so does our hope!
As soon as sin entered the world our loving Father God promised a savior. (Genesis 3:15) That savior is Jesus and he alone is our hope. When life is crazy where are we placing our hope? Is your hope in lifted Stay at Home Orders or is it in Jesus? Is your hope in vaccines and cures or is it in Jesus? Is your hope in masks and gloves or is it in Jesus?
When things started to go downhill with this virus, I retreated. Into my home. Into safety. Into an introverted lifestyle. Maybe you did too. But being behind the mask reminded me that a city on a hill cannot be hidden! (Matthew 5:14) I have the hope of Jesus Christ beating in my chest and He is the Light of the World. No mask can hide it and no virus can steal it away from me! Staying home and wearing masks and even this virus, are all so very temporary. But the hope we find in Jesus is eternal. Cling to it, share it with others and walk in it confidently every day. Because one day the turbulent times we are facing right now will be in the past, but Jesus will be with us for all eternity.