Wednesday, July 11, 2018

So this happened.

I posted a thing on Facebook that said, in its essence, “Sometimes the thing that is lawful is not the thing that is just.”  I had posted several similar things, but this particular one upset a friend, who thought it meant that I was calling the President a Nazi. Since that is absolutely not what I meant, I explained what I did mean, and my friend accepted my explanation.  A third person commented that she understood my reasons for posting the thing, but felt I was far too soft in my opinions, then attacked my friend personally.  As I will not accept this sort of behavior on my page, I deleted the hateful comment and blocked that person.  Sadly, my friend, the person I was defending by deleting the ugliness, chose to unfriend me.   
We are living in a time when two people holding different opinions cannot discuss those differences civilly.  And even on those increasingly rare occasions when two people can politely agree to disagree, other people will dog pile on the side they oppose and make any sort of conversation impossible.  This is so sad, and such a commentary on the terrible divide that has grown up, not just in our country, but around the world.  Even in the so-called “debates” between candidates for political office in every nation, we are seeing far more in the way of personal attacks and far less reasoned discussion of actual issues.  This, I’m told is simply the way the world is today, and I must accept it.
Actually - no.  I do not have to accept this.  
Paul said to the church in Rome, Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds, so that you may discern what is the will of God—what is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:2)
I’m pretty sure the will of God does not call for us to speak hatefully to or about one another at any time, for any reason.  Rather, the will of God is that we are to love one another as we love ourselves.  The will of God is that we treat one another as we, ourselves, wish to be treated. If someone is upset with us, we should seek to be reconciled, for Jesus said, " if you remember that your brother or sister has something against you, 24 leave your gift there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother or sister, and then come and offer your gift” (Matthew 5:23-24)
If we are truly to be Christ followers, let us leave behind the ways of the world.  Let us stop allowing the anger that surrounds us to guide us in our own behavior.  Let us instead seek to find the good in everyone, embrace the Christ in everyone, so that all the world may, through our individual efforts, be reconciled in God’s grace.