HATE is a symptom, not the problem

I see a lot of pictures, videos and blogs about all the hate that is going this week. Lots of conspiracy theories, blame casting, shaming, ranting and some very, very, emotional “juxtapositioning.” It’s the blacks, it’s the whites, it’s the democrats, it’s the republicans, f_la_uva_march_170816it’s the past President, it’s President Trump, it’s everyone in California. Wow. Tear down the monuments! Leave the monuments! The monuments are the problems. Jim Crow, white privilege, BLM, Nazis, Anarchists, Antifa, the world is killing itself with labels, acronyms and rallied up emotionalisms; death by a thousand labels. Death by hate.

I’ve been processing this since the UVA atrocity last weekend. All the hate, everyone is pointing to some kind of hate. This is the kind of thing that has no one single answer or problem. It isn’t one people group, it isn’t one issue, it isn’t one statue, it isn’t one flag, it is many, many desires, hurts and issues crashing together. It is the kind of thing that when it happens and people start chanting and burning and killing, well, it screams inside of you.

It isn’t just a racial issue. If the race issue was solved it would be gender. If that were solved it would be nationality, if that were solved it would be economy, if it wasn’t economy it would be handicaps and age, for some reason humanity has an incredible capacity for creating labels that give us a focus for hate. Hate is learned, it is tolerated and it is perpetuated.

Racism, politics, and nationalism are not the problem; it appears to me they are symptoms of a problem. A person cuts their arm and it starts bleeding profusely, they walk into the emergency room and the doctor says, “What’s the problem?” and the answer always seems to be, “I’m bleeding.” Bleeding is not a problem, bleeding is the symptom of a problem. The problem is “I’m cut.” Wipe the blood away and more will come, sew up the cut and the bleeding will likely stop.

Hate is a symptom of a problem; a heart problem.

Why all the HATE? Where the heck is it coming from? I keep asking myself this. I keep Changed heartlooking at my own life, my home, my job, and my community. It seems to start in the heart. I look back to when I was a child and I said, “I hate my mom,” or, “I hate my dad.” What was I saying? I was saying that I didn’t get what I wanted when I wanted it.

The problem isn’t the world out there! What you see on television, in social media and in the papers, (do we still have papers?) is the symptom of our own hearts. The problem starts in our own homes and in our own hearts. Are we teaching our children to hate? Before you say no, think it through.

Divorce is rampant and parents, in their hurts, teach their children to hate the other parent. There always seems to be a fun parent and a real parent.

People grew up with a hurt so they are going to make sure their children aren’t hurt, they pit their children against the teachers, against the authorities, against the police, and against bosses, instead of teaching them respect, honor and duty.

As a result of our selfishness, our narcissistic tendencies, and greed, we perpetuate the hate of others. I’m convinced that every sin listed in the Bible finally comes down to the letter “I.”

I want what I want, when I want it, and how I want it.

Wars are started, peoples conquered, destroyed, and erased from the planet. People are robbed, beaten and abused, people get rejected, pushed aside and left out all because of “I.” It is in our hearts because we allow it to rule.

Just because we have been taught to hate doesn’t mean we have to hate.Max-Lucado-life-changing-meme
You do not have to accept the lies you were taught growing up.
You don’t have to continue being so negative.
Your problems are not all someone else’s fault.

You want to see the world change, go out there and care about someone not like you.
You want to see hate go away, choose to love; be the change.

To simple?

All the power, money and legislation in the world won’t make the hate go away, God will  have to do that one person at a time with a heart change. Go ahead, march and rally, it won’t change someone’s heart. Change the legislation, make new laws, demand that society be inclusive, create more quota’s, nothing changes until you look at your own heart, then sit down with someone you don’t know well and listen to them. Have lunch with someone that is not like you. Ask someone to share their story with you, ask questions and get to know them.

Change-the-World-3-940x400

The question isn’t, “What are you doing about all this?”
The question is, “What are you doing about you?”
Ask God for a new heart

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Put the Rocks Down

rocks

Why do we have to throw rocks?

I saw a diatribe this afternoon from a guy who was blistering a foreign dignitary that spoke in America. He called him all kinds of names, it was actually pretty sad. What is it about politics that requires people to be throwing rocks at one another? Reading this guys post that constituted throwing rocks was rather ironic. Here was a guy throwing rocks at a guy for throwing rocks. I saw the same thing yesterday when a satirical site wrote a piece that was clearly listed as entertainment, and yet people went after the subject of this article like she was Satan herself.

Stone Fences are Landmarks

Rocks are interesting things, you can do some cool things with them. I love riding my motorcycle along the back roads of Kentucky. They have these really cool stone fences. These stones are now historical.

antigua

Speaking of historical, I once walked along the cobblestones of Antigua; those were some really cool stones. People can do, and have done, some really positive things with stones. Landmarks to help us find our way, property markers to keep friends, friends, and gravestones to remind us of loved ones. Bridges of stone can bring us together and help us make friends. There are stones that have been built into buildings to create cities and communities.

But down through the ages, stones have been used to kill people. Sometimes people just get so mad that they throw stones. Sometimes that is all someone may have to protect themselves. Israel had a King that in his youth averted a whole war with a sling and a stone. The guy was good. I’m not gonna lie, when a young, ruddy, handsome shepherd is willing to take on a 8 or 9 foot giant with a sling a stone, he’s got mad skills with stones. And in many cultures stoning, the practice of throwing rocks at someone until they lay dead at your feet, was a form of capital punishment. I believe it was a punishment for the society that did the stoning as much as it was a punishment for the criminal. Can you imagine picking up a baseball sized rock and throwing it, then going and getting it and throwing it and doing this over and over until the person dies. It has to be a horrible means of creating death. So why do we do it? We can just as easily put the rocks down. Jesus of Nazareth invited a group of rock throwers to throw stones if they themselves hadn’t sinned. Maybe we could choose to put the rocks down. Maybe we could use the rocks to build something positive? Maybe instead of throwing rocks at people that we disagree with, we can stack them up until a bridge is built or a home is established. Can you imagine a world where stones are used to create better places for people who maybe don’t even deserve it?

Throwing rocks at people for throwing rocks

I have learned through the ages of my life that throwing rocks at people for throwing rocks at people is still throwing rocks at people. Slandering someone for slandering someone is still slandering someone. Disparaging someone for disparaging someone is still disparaging someone.

What if we decided to work hard at putting the rocks down? Maybe we will fail, but what if our failure was that we weren’t willing to throw rocks any more. What if we decided to be the people that changed families, communities, governments and the world? What if what we decided to be most known for was not throwing rocks at people who threw rocks at us? I’m going to give it a shot, want to join me?