From Reverend Tammy Lee
One of the first lessons my father taught me as a young adult is what happens when you back someone in a corner with no way for them to get out. That corner could be an intellectual, physical or emotional confrontation or argument.
Coming from a family of attorneys, arguments were the cornerstone of every conversation and winning them paramount. But doing that with grace, dignity and integrity was way better than the blitz often employed by those who sought to destroy as opposed to inform, humiliate as opposed to educate, wreak vengeance as opposed to find justice. You come out of a corner either fighting or cowering. Rarely do you emerge in between.
We grow more polarized every day. Facebook and Twitter make a mockery out of communication when people say things that do not contribute to the values of the faith led life but less a civilized society.
As one Vestry member said so very well last week, “would people know we are Christians by what we post online? Would they know we were Christians by our love for one another?” Not so much. I know we are all over this pandemic and yet I wonder what this pandemic is telling us about the lesser angels of our nature. The parts of us that would remain in control, on top of the heap, and pushing folks into those corners where choices are limited precisely because we feel like our choices our limited.
What if we made decisions and acted based on whether we could stand before God without shame or reproach? What if we made decisions based on the golden rule….not just do unto others as you would have them do unto you but rather treat others better than you would expect them to treat you. Would I be ashamed if God heard what I had just said on the boat with my buddies or at the beach with my girlfriends? Would my posts on any number of social media sites stand up to the scrutiny of the Savior of the world?
We don’t ask those questions because we don’t really believe God is listening to the minutia of our conversations, much less cares about what comes out of our mouths. But what if indeed God is listening? And what if God does care about how we represent God in thought, word and deed? What then?
There is much I fear in this world. I fear what will become of us if we continue to be so uncharitable to our neighbor. I fear standing before my maker knowing that the movie film which is my life will roll before me with God right there asking me if I meant what I said, what I wrote, how I acted. Did I mean not to love?
Keep the Faith and let the Faith keep you,