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When is a mask more than a mask?

Better Judgment?

Wearing a mask has become a topic of social debate in Canada, including churches.  Unlike mandating the wearing of seat belts for safety, the use of masks has been left up to the better judgment of Canadians. Time will tell if Canadians have the collective will to be well.


When you see someone wearing a mask in public, what does that say to you about the person?

a) I care
b) I’m cautious
c) I’m concerned.
d) I’m conforming
e) other

How does changing the question affect your answer?

What does wearing a mask mean to others?

a) a senior
b) a health care worker
c) someone with asthma or diabetes
d) someone with cancer

Freedom, Honor and Sacrifice

The Alberta government took a huge risk on us.  Suggesting, not mandating, masks be worn inside and outside is an appeal to altruism. However, left to our own devices, the path of least resistance is the road well travelled. Nonetheless, the freedom to choose is a gift. Wearing a mask may be a short-lived opportunity to be counter-culture and act selflessly, out of love.

The New Testament calls such behavior, “in honor preferring the other.”  Is this a season of unmasking our preferences?

David Brooks’ NY Times opinion piece doesn’t leave any doubt about his perspective. “If you don’t breathe the spirit of the nation, if you don’t have a fierce sense of belonging to each other, you’re not going to sacrifice for the common good. We’re confronted with a succession of wicked problems and it turns out we’re not even capable of putting on a friggin’ mask.”

Little Things, Big Differences

As with all things, not every person is capable of participating; some people are not able to wear a mask.

What do you think about wearing a mask?

I’m curious. No judgment. Would you take a moment and let me know what your practice or opinion is by joining the conversation at the bottom of this page.  a) Caring b) Cautious c) Concerned d) Conformed  e) Other  Thank you.

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Bob Jones

Happily married to Jocelyn for 44 years. We have two adult sons, Cory and his wife Lynsey and their son Vincent and daughter Jayda; Jean Marc and his wife Angie and their three daughters, Quinn, Lena and Annora. I love inspiring people through communicating, blogging, and coaching. I enjoy writing, running, and reading. I'm a fan of the Double E, Bruins, Celtics, Red Sox and Pats. Follow me on Twitter @bobjones49ers


  • Julie MacKenzie says:

    What wearing a mask means to me…Being respectful to other people & protecting not only myself but others. It is the right thing to do…until things get better. 🙂 So, my answer would be a) Caring. Have a great day Bob! 😉 <3 Hope you are doing well…

  • Anonymous says:

    I wear a mask when I’m going outside for any reason. I ask anyone who is with to also wear a mask as my health is compromised. I certainly appreciate anyone with a mask that I encounter.

  • Millie says:

    e) Other – Because I am an Albertan I go with Alberta’s Chief Medical Officer recommendation to wear masks in crowded areas when social distancing is not possible. I have a mask with me at all times, but so far in Barrhead, Alberta have not needed to use it.

  • Carole Schlachta says:

    What is the problem with obeying and trusting the doctors and nurses?
    It is the law of the land. If you dont care about yourself, obviously you dont and you dont care about other. Did not Jesus say as he held a coin to show his disciples saying, give unto Ceasar what is Ceasar’s and give unto God what is God’s?
    I care about myself but I would not want to be responsible for others becoming ill.

  • Tara Sinanan says:

    I wear a mask at all times when away
    from home. It’s the law and it’s for
    everyone’s benefit.

  • Matt says:

    Uncomfortable at times? For sure. Necessary at times? 100%. To me, this comes back to love of neighbour. Am I willing to risk/endure minor discomfort in order to help? Yes. That said, I tend to lean into doing so when social distancing is not possible (ie church services, shopping, etc.).

  • Bob Jones says:

    Welcome to the conversation, Matt. The information available during COVID about the effects of wearing a mask is ever evolving. All the way from masks do no good to they help contain the spread and can increase GDP potential by 25%. I think they will eventually become mandatory use for inside public gatherings until there is a vaccine. In the meantime, wearing a mask can be a way of saying, “I care about you.” I hope you’ll hop into future conversations.

  • Bob Jones says:

    Thanks Millie for joining in the conversation. Alberta in general and places like Barrhead have done a good job of complying and containing the spread. This is a marathon, not a sprint.

  • Bob Jones says:

    You can’t go wrong, Carole, caring about others.

  • Bob Jones says:

    Good to hear your “voice,” Tara. And way to go by wearing a mask. You are a reason there is hope for overcoming the virus.

  • Kimberly Kluthe says:

    Wearing a mask for me is about caring. I would never want to intentionally make anyone sick. However the issue is disputed in my on family…so even some of them don’t. It is frustrating for me especially coming from a health profession. But until it’s made mandatory people won’t conform. Hey people still don’t wear seatbelts…and it’s mandatory. It’s challenging to fight what someone believes especially with so much misinformation around.

  • Bob Jones says:

    Fences make good neighbours. Rules make good x-rays. Masks say “I care.”

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