Covid-19 and My Paycheck
If we let him go on like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation. John 11:48
At the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, I was dubious regarding the need for radical change. As the numbers grew exponentially in Italy and New York though, I began believing, and as a physician, I felt the need to support efforts to slow the virus’ spread.
As we’ve flattened the curve, my willingness to change though, has faltered. My workplace has become dreadfully slow which has affected my income. The thing that has inconvenienced me the most – and I hate to admit this – is the colossal dent that the coronavirus has made in my paycheck.
Now, no one should – and no one will – weep over a physician’s decrease in pay. My point though, is that I believed in a thing, up until it affected my financial status. Then, my entire outlook changed. I’m not going to address the arguments over whether we should begin to open up the country here. That’s not what this entry is about.
This is about how my morality is often dictated, not by right and wrong, but by how a thing affects me personally. This was certainly the case in today’s passage. In the story, Jesus raised a man from the dead, which vexed the Pharisees. If they let Jesus continue his miracles, more people would follow him. The Pharisees worried that if a messiah were raised up, the Romans would come and take away their authority and status.
The Pharisees weren’t concerned with following God or what was truly right. They worshipped rules, power and authority. The Pharisees saw the same miracles that others saw, but they couldn’t follow Jesus because he threatened their way of life.
This is a problem for us as well. Our morality is often dictated, not by what we know to be right, but by how a thing affects us personally. If we worship money or comfort, we can easily justify evil as long as it maintains our way of life. Cheating on my taxes isn’t a big deal. I deserve a drink if it makes me feel good. If no one knows, it can’t be that bad, right?
What the Pharisees should have done, and what I must do daily, is turn to God, asking what the right thing is. Then, I must follow that thing, whether or not it works out in my favor. Right and wrong is governed by God, not my personal preferences.
Authors Note: I recently had the opportunity to do a radio interview on a show called Real Recovery. Here’s the link to that interview if you’d like to listen.