Seems like a ridiculous question doesn’t it? Yet, when we pull out Jesus’ name, and insert our own, all of sudden it seems like a legitimate question. Why?
Is it because we know Jesus wouldn’t panic-buy, or panic anything for that matter?
Is panic-buying in alignment with what it means to follow Jesus? I don’t think the two match up. They can’t.
Panic-buying because of a virus, or war, or economic downturn, or natural disaster that is coming is not Christ-like. It is turning in on oneself – believing that we are islands unto ourselves. Panic-buying is all about saving me. And maybe those closest to me. But really, it’s about me.
Panic-buying ignores several important facts. It’s not just me that needs to keep my hands clean. It’s everyone. If I’m hoarding everything, how is everyone keeping their hands clean. How is this working to prevent further spread of a contagious disease? It isn’t. But that’s because panic-buying is based on fear. And fear is irrational.
Fear tells us to look inward on ourselves – to take care of ourselves. Fear lies to us and tells us that we are separate from everyone else, and they they have no impact on me and I have no impact on them. This is ridiculous. Our survival is intimately linked to other people – even people we don’t know. And to people that we consider as enemies. Let that sink in for a moment. Our survival is linked to the survival of our enemies. Hmm.
Instead of panic-buying, I offer this alternative – seeing the Image of God in all around us. I challenge you to adopt the belief of Shalom – wholeness in community. Shalom means that our fates are tied together. There is no us and them. There is only us. Instead of panic-buying, try loving your neighbor and your enemy because it is in loving the other that we are fulfilling the greatest command – to love God.