Me a Germaphobe?

The whole way to the gas station it consumed my thoughts.

As I walked in I noticed a line on the floor making sure people were 6 feet apart. I felt my personal bubble senses heighten. I was on my way to get pizza for lunch, but for the first time in my life, I was having an internal battle.

The pizza machine was taped shut and a note was attached. “Please do not touch. See an employee for a slice of pizza.” I thought through how wise that was but wondered how clean the employee was.

What was happening to me? Why was that thought even in my mind?

Things were going smooth up to this point. I hadn’t touched a thing and no one had come within 6 feet of me. But it was all about to change.

I slid my debit card into the card reader and I had to make a decision. “Is the amount on the screen correct?” A simple question with a simple answer….Yes. But I couldn’t give a verbal answer. I had to make a decision. Pick up the pen that the guy in front of me had just used or tap the “yes” button on the screen with my finger like hundreds of people before me.

My hand shook like I was standing without gloves on Antarctica as I slowly reached to confirm the amount was correct. I could feel the germs jumping on board my finger as I touched the screen and with record-breaking speed making their way to my mouth to infect my body.

Now all you germaphobes out there have a heart rate over 100 just reading this so far. Before you crown me king of the germaphobe club let me make a confession.

I have never been this way before.

As a matter of fact, you could call me a germaphobe bully. I’m usually the guy making fun of germaphobes and trying to scare them and to show them that their paranoia makes them more sickly than myself.

I’m different now. I’m not full-blown germaphobe yet, but I have been asking myself this question. What has happened to me? Why are these thoughts constantly rolling around in my mind?

I believe there is an answer to my question and I have been challenged with a couple of spiritual lessons as I think on this.

With all the attention in our country on this Covid-19, I am suddenly aware of the high cost of getting infected. My wife works as an Executive Director in an Assisted Living Facility. One virus germ from me to her to those elderly there where she works could be deadly. The cost is great.

I also am being told on a daily basis that if we can stay home and social distance and not spread these germs we can flatten the curve and end this time of quarantine. So it could be said that that I have not only become aware of the cost, but I’m also more aware of the reward.

All of this attention on Covid-19 has transformed this germaphobe bully into a germaphobe. I think it’s fair to say we as a country have all become more aware of germs to some extent or another.

Now where am I going with all of this?

It’s time that we as Christians become as sensitive to sin as we have to germs and I think we should for the same two reasons.

The Cost of Sin: Sin cost Jesus Christ His life. He willing laid down His life to free us from the bondage of sin. My sin cost Jesus His life. Now as a child of God knowing the cost of sin, why wouldn’t I be more aware of sin and want to distance myself from it. Sin destroys. Sin kills. Sin is not to be played with or entertained. We all have personal examples of how we have seen sin destroy either our lives or the lives of others we love, yet we still play with sin.

Paul said in 2 Corinthians 5:14-15

For the love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead: And that he died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto him which died for them, and rose again.

The Reward of Avoiding Sin: A Christian whose sins are confessed walks in fellowship with God. Walking in fellowship with God brings power and joy and peace that people everywhere long for, but search for in all the wrong places.

Sadly, many of us tremble more over germs than we do sin. We quickly (and rightly) heed the government’s warning of “social-distancing” to avoid a virus but ignore God’s command to flee from sin.

I’m not sure if once this Covid-19 virus is behind us if will join the germaphobe club or go back to my bullying ways, but this one thing pray for in my own heart.

That God would keep my heart sensitive to sin and its cost and keep my eyes fixed on the rewards of a life free from the bondage sin brings.