On Second Thought ...

There is a lot going on in the world these days – and everyone seems to have an opinion about it.  With social media, everyone has an open stage at which they can offer up a quick rant, opinion, idea, solution, etc. Almost all of these result in someone responding with their own rant, opinion, idea or solution.  The crazy thing is … nobody wins! Have you ever read on social media a debate, where someone was declared the winner? I especially enjoy reading the thoughts of our younger generation on topics that hit the heart of today’s society.  My first thought is to comment on their post and ask them if they realize how ignorant they sound. I want to simply ask them if “their opinion” is really “their opinion” or the opinion of others that they have casually adopted as their own without any soul searching of their true morals and beliefs. I have always been amazed how people form an opinion on things they know nothing about. I remember reading an old saying: “If you want me to treat your ideas with more respect, get some better ideas.” Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote: “People do not seem to realize that their opinion of the world is also a confession of character.”

Wait a minute … STOP!  What I am doing? What I have just written is actually [my] opinion! I am passing judgement on others and in a sense going on my own rant.

On Second ThoughtScripture tells us in Matthew 7:1-2, “Do not judge, or you too will be judged. For in the same way you judge others, you will be judged, and with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.” It seems as though I have to respect the opinion of others, but that doesn’t mean I have to agree with them. And, I actually don’t have to push my opinion on them and condone them for their belief. Last week in church, my daughter-in-law (whom I have had several “discussions” with about issues in today’s society, handed me her phone with the following scripture. “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity. (1 Timothy 4:12)        I have to admit, it made me do a lot of thinking and reading; that scripture made me start reading more about what God’s word says about “our words” and how we conduct ourselves in conversation with others or on social media. So thank you Bailee, (oh ye from the younger generation) for making me take a step back and do some soul searching of my own.

(Ecclesiastes 11:9) You who are young, be happy while you are young, and let your heart give you joy in the days of your youth. Follow the ways of your heart and whatever your eyes see, but know that for all these things God will bring you into judgement.

(Ephesians 4:29 & 31) Do not let any unwholesome talk come out or your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.