Dirty Hands Christians

Sam Rainer

February 15, 2008

There’s an epidemic in the United States. People everywhere seem to be infected with germaphobia. I say this lightly because I married a germaphobe. If you have one in your household, then you understand what I mean when I say that a pump bottle of hand wash is always in sight in every room. You can’t just buy regular tissues, either. They’ve got to be special cold-fighting-germ-killing tissues.

And according to an article in the Wall Street Journal, there’s a whole industry springing up to counter the one spot that causes germaphobic panic attacks everywhere: the public restroom door. Pinky-pullers and wrist-pushers across our great anti-bacterial land are leaping for joy.

What’s new in the Mr. Clean market? Motion-activated sensor doors, foot pulls, and wrist latches. The government is even getting involved. Last year, Massachusetts state representative James Vallee introduced a bill that would require all public-bathroom doors to open outward. The purpose of the bill was to enable people to push the door open with a shoulder or foot.

Perhaps I’m cynical, but I always chuckle at the guy in the bathroom who’s trying to turn the doorknob with a wad of tissues. Clearly, I try to live my life with “WWJD?” at the forefront of my mind. But as a red-blooded American male, I also live by “WWJWD?” (That’s What Would John Wayne Do? for all you who are wondering). Quite frankly, I can’t see John Wayne pulling off an extra paper towel to turn a knob because he’s worried about a couple of microbes scurrying around on his fingertips.

I say this because I think some of our nation’s churches are afraid of getting their hands dirty. They fear digging into the culture because of the muck they may encounter.

But Christ does not call us to pristine lives. We are made pure. We are cleansed by the blood of the Lamb. But in order to share His purifying message, we’ve got to be willing to turn a few dirty doorknobs. We’ve got to be willing to hug a few lepers. We’ve got to converse with the women at the wells.

God gives us His armor to defend against the spiritual attacks that the powers of darkness bring. What amazes me is how carefully people plan for germ battles and how little people prepare for spiritual attacks. If your spiritual armor is not scuffed, dinged, scratched, and dented, then you’re not using it properly (if at all).

So let’s put away the spiritual hand sanitizer and put on God’s armor.

One comment on “Dirty Hands Christians”

  1. Angela says:

    This is so true! I have been saying this for years. The enemy is, I believe desensitizing us to care and reach out to the hurting. I admit, I am one of those who open door knobs with towels, but I have put limits on my “germaphobia” when the Holy Spirit showed me how this can effect our relationships.

    Thank you for posting. God bless you.

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