How now shall we live?
We went to Vermont for a few days over the holiday to see Chewie.
Did you know… Vermont has the second smallest population (626,000) of all the states in the union (also the second-lowest population density). It is a collection of old hippies and leftists walking alongside sidearm carriers and dairy farmers. Until thirteen years ago, it was perfectly legal in Brattleboro (my mom was born their!) to walk up Main Street naked as a jaybird, because Vermont had no ordinance against public nudity and leaves it up to the local municipality to decide.
So why do I give you all this info about Vermont?
As we drove around, we noticed that the Vermont approach to the pandemic was a bit different. Sure they were early-in on mandatory fourteen-day quarantine if you came from out of state. They jumped on business closures pretty quickly. But it was the attitude about mask-wearing and social distancing that stood out. Vermont chose to make it a strength in community and neighborly thing.
We saw signs all over Rutland (the third largest population in the state) encouraging people to cover their cough, wash their hands, and wear a mask. Sure many states and communities around the country have this, but what made them different was that they focused on neighbor, not self! It wasn’t about personal rights but rather was about caring for others.
One of our favorite signs had to do with social distancing; it was very Vermont.
Six months in, the pandemic is spreading in many states in our country. Let me remind you of what the LORD has to say about how to act all the time, let alone in this crisis that has never been seen in modern history:
Love your neighbor as yourself.Leviticus 19:9, 19:18, Matthew 5:43, 19:19, 22:39, Mark 12:31, Luke 10:27, Romans 13:9, Galatians 5:14, James 2:8
My friends, it is time to come together rather than divide. It is time to look out for others rather than think about whether the government is trying to control us. Take off your tinfoil hats, lay down your attitudes, and let the flesh and spirit of your hearts be softened.
After all, Jesus taught about love and relationships in a time when a government was oppressive to the point where it freely dotted the landscape with the bodies of those who allegedly committed crimes against the state hung on crosses made of wood.