I’ve looked everywhere. I really have. New Testament, Old Testament, King James, New King James, even gave the New International Version a try, but no matter how much I’ve poured over it, there is no place in Scripture where we are told to abandon our critical thinking skills to be saved. Jesus said we must deny ourselves and pick up our crosses, but in my Bible, there is no addendum that says we must likewise forfeit critical thought if we choose to follow the way of the cross.
On the contrary, we are admonished to be wise as serpents and even told that the spiritual man judges all things. If you believe that once we are saved we are supposed to turn off our brains and simply parrot Joel Osteen inspired one-liners beloved by busybodies and house-fraus the world over, then you’ve bought into the world’s lie that only the mentally deficient are dumb enough to believe in the God of the Bible, or in Jesus Christ being Lord, Savior, and King.
It is an oft-repeated narrative, replete with either the obligatory eye roll or that look of faux sympathy as though you’ve just told them you got fired from the local pack and ship for eating all the packing peanuts.
Granted, some of us aren’t doing much to fight the stereotype, either. Whether it’s because we’re so heavenly minded we are of no earthly good, or we just want to pretend that we are, rather than critically look at a given issue, and discern not only what the initial impact, but what the subsequent aftershocks might be, we flippantly and sanctimoniously throw out a well-worn one-liner, not having enough self-awareness to realize that we’ve conflated the soul of man with this bag of bones, water, and sinew we slog around for a few dozen years. Jesus didn’t die for your wrinkly skin or saggy gut. He didn’t die for your receding hairline or face acne. Jesus died for your soul that it may be redeemed and reconciled to the Father. Jesus died so that you might have hope of future glory, not some all-access pass in this present life, for if in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most pitiable.
It’s neither sinful, immoral, or unjust to ponder what the cost of this current crisis might be, and the toll it will take on those left to pick up the pieces afterward. It’s not evil to point out that because we’ve cratered the global economy to attempt and save less than one percent of the population, the fallout will affect all of the population. This is the point I’ve been trying to get across: the result from all this will likely be millions if not tens of millions of people either jobless, homeless, starving, suicidal, or all three.
We all want aunt Bertha who is 98 years young and with full-blown dementia since George Bush was president to live another hundred years, but she won’t, and neither will I. These husks of flesh have expiration dates, and the older we get, the more vulnerable we become to all manner of things. That fall you used to recovered from in an hour now takes a month, that flu you got through with chicken soup, and orange juice now requires hospitalization, because the closer we get to the finish line, the frailer the flesh gets.
I’ll say it because it must be said. Even though it’s what most reasonable, critical thinking people are thinking but don’t want to verbalize because they don’t want to seem unfeeling, uncaring, or some other myopia induced trope. If we continue down the path of making perfectly healthy people stay home, keeping businesses closed, and an entire workforce sidelined, we’ll be looking at death tolls that will dwarf those incurred from this pandemic.
As I read on some Facebook wall somewhere, if you want to stay home, stay home. If you want to wear a mask, wear a mask. If you want to avoid large crowds, avoid large crowds, but I am not required to descend into poverty, lose my home, or my livelihood for you.
With love in Christ,
Michael Boldea Jr.