Perhaps no other topic is as emotionally charged or divisive right now as this.  It seems that every newscast in Canada is broadcasting and reporting the ongoing vaccination divide in our nation. 

From restaurant owners and health care professionals, to government leaders and concerned public citizens, everyone has an opinion regarding the implementation of vaccine passports and restrictions for those who are unvaccinated. 

This has become a massive issue, and both ‘camps’ seem to be settling into their foxhole snuggly and are sticking to their decision.  

With each passing day individuals are seemingly doubling-down on their rightful action to be vaccinated or not, and are bunkering into the same reasons that has led them to make this decision.

At times I scratch my head and wonder, what in the world is going on in the minds of people?

In attempting to gain understanding, a few things have become very clear when talking with people about this issue.

Here are some things that seem to matter in this ongoing debate:

  1. Social media matters:

Not long into conversations with people (regardless of ‘camp’) there is generally a reference to ‘something’ that ‘somebody’ said or posted on social media.  Oftentimes it does not seem to matter ‘who’ or ‘where’ the post came from, but what matters is that ‘this’ was said and shared on social media.  

For many people, this is all they need to make up their mind.  Someone said it and shared it, and it’s good enough.  

2. Individual rights matter:

A person’s freedom to choose also seems to be an important issue.  I believe that most Canadians are appreciative of our Governments policies on Human Rights and Freedoms, and are thankful for it.  I am not an expert, nor have I read the letter of the law as it is written.  

What I do know, is that individual ‘rights’ seem to be at the top of this vaccination discussion and sometimes even trump the social media influence.

3. Conspiracy theories matter:

Finally, yes, in the back of peoples minds there seems to be a feeling of distrust towards those in authority or from specific countries.  Again, generally referring to social media links and statements found online, people are convinced that there is a shadow agenda lurking behind the scenes and an evil narrative being implemented via governmental decisions.  

It seems that only a select few enlightened people are truly able to see what is ‘really’ going on, while the rest of the masses blindly follow whoever is in charge. 

Here’s the thing.  Whether you agree with me or not, these ‘matters’ really seem to matter when it comes to making a decision concerning the COVID-19 vaccine. 

Again, it is not my intention to pass judgement on either camp or individuals residing inside of them.  I have friends and loved one on both sides.  I am simply attempting to highlight the things that seem to matter to the minds of many.  

So, whose voice is correct?

Before answering that question, let me share with you three more things that should also matter:

  1. Living mentors should matter:

The Bible says that, “The way of fools seems right to them, but the wise listen to advice.” Or Proverbs 15:22, which states, “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed.”  

The Bible seems to acknowledge that humanity is prone to going astray. Like you, I have succumbed to this a time or two in my life experience. OK, maybe it’s far more than one or two, but the point is that ‘we’ are all prone to following a faulty path if we do not listen to people we value.

How many of us wish that we could go back in time and change some bad decisions? We all would if we could. The point is that we all have examples where we wished we had acted on a trusted word of advice or listened to that certain someone in a moment of decision.

A good question to always ask, regardless of the decision is: what are my mentors saying?, and what are my mentors doing?  

Whether or not you listen and follow their lead is another thing, but at the very least, what your living mentors say and do should matter. 

2.  Meaningful traditions should matter:

Every single one of us has meaningful traditions in our lives. Just think about your daily routine and all the little things that we do every single day. From morning java to evening jammies, or from grocery shopping to social gatherings, our day is often made up of sequences of events that are based upon an established routine or traditions that have become meaningful for us.

A tradition can be defined as a custom or beliefs that are transmitted from generation to generation.  Essentially traditions can be things that are deemed to be valuable and add value to our lives.  Perhaps due to the fact that somewhere along our generational lines, somebody deemed something or someone to be valuable.  Take vehicles for example.  Brand loyalty runs deep and many conversations can become heated if someone runs down your brand.

When it comes to the current conversation about vaccines, government and healthcare in general, what does your meaningful tradition say?  Have you trusted vaccinations in the past?  Have you listened to medical professionals before?  Does any of your previous experiences and decisions matter for what you face today?

If, for some reason, you find yourself abandoning your meaningful traditions, then maybe it’s time to make an appointment and talk it over with one of your living mentors.

3.  Kingdom responsibilities should matter:

One of the very first things that the Gospel writers emphasize about Jesus, is that He taught about the Kingdom of God.  In fact, it could easily be said that the good news or gospel of Jesus could easily be called the good news or gospel of God’s Kingdom.  

A quick survey will show that there are over 157 ‘kingdom’ references within 148 verses in the New Testament.  I think that it is fair to say that Jesus and the writers of the New Testament talked a lot about the Kingdom!  For them, kingdom matters mattered.

If this is true, then as a follower of Jesus, it would seem that my thinking is to be more aligned with the Kingdom of God than anything else.  This means that followers of Jesus ought to to be more concerned about Kingdom responsibilities than ones individual rights and freedoms. If fact, there is a strong theme in the Bible suggesting that the people of God are to actually conduct themselves as citizens of heaven while living on earth.

I doubt that you will find chapter and verse concerning vaccines, but you will find plenty of verses that deal with attitudes, actions and alignment. Maybe this would be a good topic to chat about with a living mentor over a cup of meaningful java.

So, again I ask, whose voice is correct?

The answer to that question depends on how you rank the above mentioned things that ‘matter’.  

But here’s something to consider when it comes to making decisions in general:  your beliefs will definitely shape your behaviour.

Happy navigating and decision making.


One thought on “Navigating the vaccination divide

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