Kindness and Consideration Needed

   July 2020      

   I usually choose to remain silent when it comes to events in our country and the world. I’ve been left speechless by the actions of some of our fellow Americans. I feel compelled to address the judgment, anger, hate, and lack of consideration people are exhibiting at this time.

   I'll begin with the COVID 19 crisis. I know that much of the judgment and anger displayed is based mostly on fear. No one wants to get sick because of this virus, and no one wants to die as a result.

   It seems that wearing a mask in public places is an issue for some. People are criticized for either choice. I find this, quite frankly, to be bizarre!

   What’s wrong with someone wearing a mask to protect themselves or their loved ones? There are times that people need to leave their homes. Who among us wants to be responsible for spreading the virus to our family and friends?

   There are good reasons for not wearing a mask as well. There are those who have claustrophobia, anxiety attacks, or other issues that make wearing a mask difficult if not inadvisable.

   Judging someone because they choose to stay home or choose to go out is also ridiculous. Some need social interaction. Staying at home in isolation is equally dangerous for the mental health of those individuals. Why can’t we all be kind and considerate to each other during this pandemic?

   The pandemic isn’t the only issue that has compelled me to speak out. What happened to George Floyd should never happen to anyone. EVER!

   I don’t why Mr. Floyd was being arrested. Regardless, there was no reason for his death. There is no excuse for what happened to him. The man responsible for Mr. Floyd’s death as well as the officers who stood by and let it happen should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. The situation with Rayshard Brooks is not as clear to me, but I feel that Mr. Brooks should not have been killed either.

   I understand the anger and outrage in both of these instances. I have no problem with the peaceful protests that have taken place as a result. Protesting isn’t for me, but I don’t begrudge those who choose this manner of expressing their feelings.

   I do, however, take issue with some other things. The deaths of these two men are being used as an excuse. Those who are rioting, looting, vandalizing, and killing are using the deaths of these two men as an excuse to hurt others and violate our laws. Politicians, both democrats, and republicans, are using them to further their own agendas. The news media exploits it all to fuel the flames in order to increase their ratings and create division among us. You seldom hear about those who are doing good things on the news. The media delights in broadcasting only the bad. This gives people the idea that most of the world is bad.

   Racism, prejudice, and bias are seeds of anger, hatred, and discord. There are good and bad people in every race, nationality, and profession. It’s wrong to blame an entire group for the evils of the few.

   You’ve heard the maxim don’t judge a book by its cover. The same applies to people. If we all looked alike, how would we then judge people? Think about the fact that skin is just a covering like that of a book. The story is inside. The way someone looks can’t tell you anything about the nature of that person. To paraphrase Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. we should not judge others by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

   We are all created in God’s image. So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them. (Genesis 1:27)

   God doesn’t look at people the way we do. He sees what is in a person’s heart. “I the LORD search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve.” (Jeremiah 17:10)

   How can we know what is in a person’s heart? We can’t see a person’s heart as God can. We can, however, hear words and see actions. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of. (Luke 6:45)

   The last and most important point that I want to make is that Jesus Christ didn’t die for just one race or nationality. He died so all people would have the opportunity to be saved and spend eternity with Him in heaven. 1 Timothy 2:5-6 tells us, for there is one God and mediator between God and mankind, the man Jesus Christ, who gave himself as a ransom for all people.

   Jesus gave two often quoted commands. So in everything, do to others what you would have them to do you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets. (Matthew 7:12) He answered, “Love the Lord you God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind; and love your neighbor as yourself.” (Luke 10:27)

   Can you imagine what this world would be like if everyone loved others and treated others with the love, kindness, and consideration we each desire? There would be no need for protests or riots. We could all live in peace with one another.

   My heart goes out to those who are dealing with the loss of loved ones and livelihoods as a result of these circumstances. Know that you are in my prayers daily.  I also pray that we all demonstrate kindness and consideration for others during these trying times.

   Now, may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way. The Lord be with all of you. (2 Thessalonians 3:16)

All scripture quotes used are from the New International Version of the Holy Bible.