I have hesitated to write about Chic-Fil-A, mostly because it has all already been said on so many blogs and tv shows and FaceBook pages…on both sides and all the spectators.
It is rather amazing how we get stirred up.
I went to Chic-Fil-A on the “Appreciation Day.” I did not decide immediately to go, but ultimately I went because I appreciate the fact that we have the ability to speak out in this country and to take a stand.
Here’s the thing, though…and more what is on my heart than another blog post about just Chic-Fil-A…I went with a heavy heart.
I read through a fair bit of discussion surrounding the whole situation, and I was taken back by the dialog.
I was taken back by the hate. I mean, real hate…the words slung at one another and the language used was filled with hate. From both sides. Dialogs and comments that I could never let my kids read because of the vulgarity of the language.
Then I looked the other day at a video my brother posted of his dogs. He was joking a bit and titled it “Pit Bulls Fighting”…but in actuality they are just messing with each other. Still, the comment thread is filled with vulgarity and hate. Astounding.
Then I looked around at other issues on politics and a variety of topics people are talking about…and again, we speak with such hatred.
We have the right to speak out in this country and we use it to sling crass, vulgar or petty comments at one another. We speak and grab at our right to speak, and yet we say very little of value. We speak at one another and do not dialog. We show our ignorance when our comments devolve into jabs about people’s appearance and sexuality rather than working to think through our politics or theology or perspective on life.
The days surrounding the Chic-Fil-A situation left me feeling frustrated. Honestly, I believe that some of it is just the out-spurting of emotions from people who are living with stress in a season in this country that is not easy. Sometimes we need to vent, but unfortunately we tend to vent at the expense of those around us.
The other thing it left me with was the deep awareness that we are in need of something outside of ourselves for help. I was left constantly with the prayer, “Lord, have mercy”. Have mercy on us, as we hate each other….rescue us from ourselves.
Lord, have mercy.
Then, today I came across something that lifted me. I wish that things like this took off on the internet and in our discussions, but I think we like to be angry more than we would admit. Still…I’ll leave off with this, and tomorrow I’m going to spend some time with my kids showing them this video and letting them see what an amazing impact one person can have. Out of great pain, acting in love…
I am very humbly grateful that I live where I live and I have the right to take a stand on what I believe. I am very frustrated that sometimes the taking of that stand is seen as hate. I am saddened by how angry so many of us are.
I am lifted and encouraged and humbled by the actions of the quieter among us who do truly great things.
When we are left to ourselves we show often how arrogant and selfish we are. I do it all the time. When we step outside of that and are unselfish, God can transform our actions and do some rather amazing things.