No Means No

29 Mar

“No is a complete sentence and so often we forget that.”  ~ Susan Gregg

If I asked everybody to raise their hands if they did not like to be told “no”, I could guarantee that the vast majority of hands would be raised.  I do not know exactly what number of people that would be or what percentage; however, I could assure you that my hand would be one of them that was raised high in the air.

We do not like to hear the word “no”.  We do not like to have restrictions of any kind imposed upon us. Sometimes, those restrictions are crucial and a “no” is essential.  Take our present environment, for example.

We had been asked by our president and by our governor to do all that we could to restrict our movements, to remain at home as much as possible.  We saw where that request ended up.  There were pictures and videos of spring break revelers on the beaches in many parts of the country.  The reports have been coming back the past few days that many of those people who congregated brought COVID-19 back home with them.

That was the basis for Governor Holcomb’s order last week for all Hoosiers to “stay in place” from March 25 to April 7.  The reason, of course, is to try and curb the spread of the coronavirus.  They are trying to keep the spread minimal so that, when people do contract it, there will be beds available in the local hospitals to treat them.  Too many people out in public will mean too many people getting the virus at the same time.  That could overwhelm the healthcare system and deprive people of the treatment that they will need.

Restrictions and “No” are not mean-spirited.  They are given to us in order to keep us healthy, in order to keep us alive.  The Old Testament people grumbled about the restrictions placed upon them when Moses delivered the Ten Commandments at Mt. Sinai. They could not see the reason for the commandments — to keep the faith community safe.  All they could see and hear was “thou shalt not”.

We tense when we hear the word “no”.  We push the limit when we hear the word “no”.  We are often injured when we hear the word “no” and choose to ignore it.  Thank God I do not bear any scars; however, I learned the hard way as well.  My parents said “no” when they told me not to grab something that was hot. Thankfully, when I grabbed that pot on the range, it spilled to the side instead of dumping boiling water all over me.  The burn on my hand healed about the same time as the pain in my backside after receiving a spanking.  I learned the value of “no” and I encourage you to look back on your memories as well and take the “no” of our governor to heart.  Stay home.  Stay safe.

FAITH ACTION:  Pray for those who cannot remain at home because of their jobs.