Union Ridge Church

Friday, April 30, 2021

by Reverend Dan on April 30, 2021

“For I am not ashamed of the gospel . . .”

                                                Romans 1:16


I received some junk e-mail the other day with an offer to personalize a face mask. You could have it say anything you wanted.


And over the last year, I’ve seen some creative ones, realistic ones, funny ones, and ones used as advertisement for products.


But I’ve also seen vile ones, ones with offensive language and images, and ones filled with hateful and hurtful messages.


So, with all this “freedom of speech” to say whatever we want, this following story frustrated me.


Last year, Lydia went to her 3rd grade class proudly wearing her mask with pink writing that said, “Jesus loves me.” She told her family that because of the pandemic, she found comfort in the words on that mask.


When she got to school, the people in the admin office made her remove the mask. They then proceeded to ban all masks with a “religious” (Christian) message. In fact, they told Lydia if she wore it again, there would be disciplinary measures taken, up to and including suspension from school.


This little nine-year old girl was upset and confused. She said, “The sad part was because I love the words on that mask. The confused part was because I didn’t know why it was happening.”


On November 2, 2020 a case was filed against the Simpson County School District in Mississippi to defend Lydia’s right to wear that mask.


If people can wear masks with messages that divide us, demean us, hurt us, offend us . . . why is a message of love that doesn’t try to influence anyone the only one seen fit to ban? And why does it take a lawsuit to give Christians the first amendment rights all other groups so obviously enjoy?


I just don’t get it.


Father, help us to never be ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the message it brings. It is obvious that it is direly needed in the world we live in. In Jesus’ name, AMEN