Well, I dont know about you, but there’s nothing like some hot button topics, a monumental SCOTUS decision, and an upcoming election to make one want to take some dramamine before opening their facebook news feed.
I have to take social media in small doses sometimes – now is one of those times. Because I have learned one valuable and important truth in my life if I have learned nothing else: people believe what they want to believe. Not only that, but they will look for anything, and anyone, to validate those beliefs – even if someone makes a valid argument to the contrary. We seem to have this innate desire to be right. And oftentimes we are so caught up in that desire, that we forget to be kind.
My husband and I have been together 10 years this year. And I’m still learning how to be kind when I’d rather be right (and explain to him why). But kindness, kindness in the heat of a moment that makes you want to throat punch somebody – well, it’s really the only way to go.
You know, and I’m just thinking out loud a little bit here, but I’m guessing God probably has rolled His eyes a good bit at His children this week. I’m thinking that He probably finds it a bit humorous that we mortals feel the need to “Stand with God” on any issue. Humorous because we are the ultimate failures at: judging right and wrong (Adam and Eve, anyone), defending Christ (the Disciple Peter, anyone?), and using Holy Scripture to govern a people (turning 10 commandments into 600+ legalistic Jewish laws, Pharisees, anyone?) And yet, a large majority of modern day Christians seem to think we’ve suddenly got a handle on all of those things.
The danger of the past week, to me, is not that the American family has somehow been besmirched or that southern history will be lost, but rather how sure so many people are that they are on the right side.
When was the last time your questioned yourself? Really? Have you ever? I’m going to take a presumptuous stance and say, “Probably not.” Because I don’t think people’s attitudes would be what they are if they seriously questioned themselves. And I’m talking about both sides of any argument. You know why people don’t question themselves? Because it’s scary. It’s uncomfortable. And they fear, above all things, that they might be wrong.
Now, people will tell you that’s not the reason. They’ll tell you all sorts of excuses, but really, it is the fear of being wrong. And you know where that comes from? Let’s think now, what was really the most original sin? What has been hanging up mortal man since the day he started walking planet Earth?
P. R. I. D. E.
And there, right there, is the answer to what is at the root of all of these controversies. Instead of thinking about how we can love and minister to others as an outward expression of our love for God, we look for news articles, blog posts, sermons, and scriptures to legitimize our arguments. And how very, very sad that must make our Creator. How many opportunities have we missed to live OUT our faith because we were so busy trying to prove and validate our opinion?
This is where my personal questioning and re-evaluation and life experiences and prayers have brought me. Because I’m as guilty as anyone, probably more, of wanting to be right and wanting to shut up the ones that I think are wrong.
But I wasn’t given that authority. In fact, I was given two commandments: Love God and Love My Neighbor.
The religious leaders of Jesus’ day were CONSTANTLY asking him legalistic questions, and He NEVER FELL FOR IT. If we’re going to be like Christ, we’re going to have to do the same. We’re going to have to resist the urge to get into those arguments (because they accomplish nothing) and take our lead from Christ’s example. Love, minister, pour out ourselves to others.
I hate arguments. I’m really good at them, but I really have come to hate them. At the end of the day, God really is the only one Who can change peoples’ hearts. We just need to be living out His Love and leave the rest to Him. Have a little faith that He really is everything we say we believe.