We all have built-in resistance systems. From earliest childhood we know what is tasteful or distasteful, what soothes and comforts us, and what is aggravating. What is more, even as infants we have distinct ways to register our dislike of something---a grimace, frown, food on the high-chair, a sound, defiant words, and eventually disobedience. There's this inner me-myself-and I control mechanism that communicates our resistance to whatever is lighting our fire. And, human resistance systems are on parade right now. Covid-19 has ignited many of them. Anticipation of the new normal everybody is talking about has raised the ire of many more. We're pretty much a spoiled culture, accustomed to getting what we want. The restrictions and adjustments we are being told about by the medical community, those in the financial world, and government officials smack of sour grapes or rotten tomatoes, the more trendy term these days. What in the world?
All the speculation about the new normal has us all guessing. Up front we have to admit that we really don't know what's coming. It's merely speculation at this point. But, even for a novice in these matters like me, this guesswork takes two predictable norms. There certainly will be big picture issues, those that apply to government, medical research and care, financial planning, employment systems, insurance modifications, educational policies. and matters on a scale above my personal household. At the the same time, there will definitely be new normal realities that move into our homes, go to work with us every day, and define life at the nitty-gritty level of everyday. They may discomfort us, interrupt our normal life styles, whatever normal really is, and impact us at more personal levels. And, these are the new normals that we're more likely to resist. These will touch the me-myself-and-I aspects of life that are most sacred to us. You know, my personal autonomy, the do-not-touch areas of my persona life.
My Christian worldview gives guidance when my resistance modes are activated. Up front is the biblical counsel to remain submissive to government authority. Again, as in previous days, the Apostle Paul's word to the Roman believers seem most applicable---
Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except
from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists
the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur
Romans 13: 1-2, ESV
In all of the speculation and guessing about what the new normal will be this is Bible certainty. Believers are expected to follow and submit to these new normal activities and practices even though they may produce discomfort and a certain amount of angst in our personal lives.
Jesus Christ spoke about resistance as well. Yes, his teaching was radical, spiritual truth in a self-centered, me-myself-and-I world. He said that we should not even resist people with evil intent.
But I say to you, Do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right
cheek, turn to him the other also.
Matthew 5: 39, ESV
It must be noted that in this instance he wasn't speaking about the Adversary, Satan, the ultimate evil one. Yes, we are to resist him. Here, Jesus was explaining the "other cheek" response to people with evil intent. We are to be those second-mile believers who witness our faith by taking the demands of the world around us to another level. That level is to demonstrate our faith by being as much like Christ as us sinful, self-centered people can be.
These are strange times. We will be challenged by the new normal resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic. Resistance is one of those human responses that we know and cherish. We learned it in infancy. But, we must exercise great wisdom in being resistant to what is coming, as speculative as it is right now.
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