Why wear a mask to church?
“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.”
So why would anyone wear a mask to church? The other day I heard a Christian say he wouldn’t wear a mask to church because he wasn’t worried about catching Covid-19. It surprised me. But then I realized this brother has completely misunderstood the reason he ought to consider wearing a mask. The purpose of wearing a mask in an enclosed space like a church is not so much to protect yourself from harm, but to protect those around you. To fully protect yourself would require a medical-grade N95 mask worn properly (which most of us probably would not do). But that’s not why you wear it. You wear it to protect others from you accidentally spreading Covid-19 to them just in case you’ve been exposed and don’t know it.
Here’s how it works. A cloth masks limits your ability to spew water droplets out into the environment (which is how Covid-19 spreads). Think of it this way. If no one is wearing a mask and I spit at you – something I’d never do, of course, but if I did – your face would get wet. If you are wearing a mask and I spit at you, less of your face will get wet and that’s a little better, but not much. But if I’m wearing a mask and I try to spit at you, very little of my spit will reach you. That’s why you wear a mask. It’s not a selfish thing you do to protect yourself. It’s an act of love you undertake for the good of others! You willingly sacrifice your face-freedom for their protection.
And that really is the point. Wearing a mask when we are in close proximity to others, especially the vulnerable, is one way we can love them by making sure we don’t expose them to a virus we may have. And the longer we’re in one place together, the more important that is. So that’s something to think about. As in all of Christian living, it’s not about doing what is preferred by you, but in sacrificial love doing what is best for those around you.
“Little children, love one another!”