Tag Archives: elections

Truth & Kindness

Truth . . . is it important?  This political season appears to be about “truth.”  We hear the word “lie” all the time on both sides of the political spectrum.  But, are we really wanting the truth?  And, where does truth come from?

For a few weeks I have been bothered by some statements I read on Facebook.  What is new with that?  Everyone is bothered by what someone is saying during this political time.  I will not state what was talked about in detail.  I see things all the time published that say things about Biden, and things about Trump.  I take them all with a grain of salt.  I am not sure anyone knows the truth any longer.

Anyway, the item on the internet this time was about President Trump.  It was something that they said he said, but taken out of context, taken from a different discussion about something else.  There were several people who were with him at the time he supposedly made the statement, and one of them, who is not a fan or friend of his, said that the president never said those comments.  He was with him that day, and that was a false report.  I tend to believe that when someone, who has no reason to support someone they are opposed, makes that kind of stand.  So, I did something I don’t normally do—I made a comment on this Facebook post that it was untrue, that even his non-supporter said it was untrue.  I was hoping the person who posted this would remove it.  What surprised me was not that it remained posted, but a comment replied to my comment.  Fortunately, it was from a person I do not know at all.  Here is the comment quoted verbatim:  “At this point does it even matter if it’s true? This is exactly the kind of thing he’s known for saying . . . .”   My reply was, “the truth ALWAYS matters.”

Does the truth always matter?  As a follower of Jesus, I think the truth always matters.  Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life . . . .”  ~John 14:6.  He also said, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”  Knowing truth sets me free.  I don’t have to live in fear.  There is a freedom in Christ that only those who have their faith in him can understand.  

As I look at what our media is saying, I just shake my head.  How do we know what is the truth?  How do we quit spewing falsehoods because it fits our narrative?  

I don’t listen or read the news very often.  I do listen to what people actually say, not just candidates, but people around me.  What is their source of truth?  Do we just believe something because it feels good?  Do we believe something because that is what we want it to be?  What is your standard for truth?  If it is just what you think is the thing because you like it, it fits what you want to believe—does truth change when you change?  Because we all change over time.  Why should I believe your truth today, and then five years from now your truth changes?  

For me truth is based in Scripture.  Did you know that there are over 5,000 manuscripts of the New Testament that were found by archeologists?  There are less manuscripts by Plato (only 5) describing Socrates (who never wrote anything—and Jesus never wrote anything), and yet people do not deny the existence or words of Socrates.  Interesting, isn’t it?  The gospels were written by eye witnesses to Jesus, what he did and what he taught.  They are from four different points of view, but none contradict the other.  God’s truth never changes.  He doesn’t change his mind.  He is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

So, as I watch what is happening in my country—the election, the protests, people spouting whatever they believe is happening, I look at it though the eyes of truth.  I am human, and I make mistakes and may not see it as clearly as I should, but my source of truth will not change.  I have something I can rely on.

If I have to vote for someone based on what other people tell me that I should think, I have given my power to them.  Who are the candidates—what did they really say?  You won’t hear the private conversations unless they are on a “hot mic.”  Listen to what they say, not to what others say about them.  Then do your homework.  Did they do what they said they would do?  Our candidates both now have political records.  What is true?  What legislation did they actually put through?  What have they done?  Does it fit what we want to hear or not hear?  Does it fit what is true?  

What is really sad to me is that there are more than 2 candidates running for president, but our system silences their voices.  I believe if you are able to get on the ballots, you should be able to debate.  Why do you need a number of votes before you can be on the debate floor?  The debate is not an election.  Let’s hear from all of them—the good, the bad, the ugly, and the crazies!

Let’s seek truth.  I saw a Facebook post that said our vote is not a Valentine, for the person who we “love.”  We should be voting for the person who we believe will take us where we want to be as a country.  We should know if what we want is based on a truth.

What happened to “agree to disagree”?  Why does someone have to get in my face to tell me what they think of me because I disagree with them?  Some say they did not get in my face, but writing something about how you feel about someone who thinks differently (and it is a judgmental statement) is “getting in my face.”  Why does one have to cry out all their thoughts about what they think of other people on the other side to make their point?  Where is that word “tolerance” — which seems to be in no one’s vocabulary any longer.  

Tell me what is good about your candidate?  Tell me why you think they deserve a vote.  Don’t tell me why you hate the other candidates.  Don’t tell me what you think of me because I don’t agree.  

I pray everyday that we will love one another.  I don’t see a lot of love.  The Golden Rule, which is actually something Jesus taught us, says, “Do to others as you would have them do to you.” ~Matthew 6:31. Do you want people to disparage you for your beliefs?  Same goes here.  It would be great if we can at least follow the golden rule, and not only treat others, but also speak about others as you wish them to speak about you.  Hmm.  Food for thought.

Love Wins!

I don’t want to turn on the television today.  The impeachment trial is going on, and once usaagain, both sides are giving their closing arguments.  It’s like a “He Said / She Said” argument.  Do you really know who to believe?  Why does one side want more witnesses?  I thought it was the job of the House of Representatives to do the investigation and call all the witnesses, kind of like a grand jury.  Is there enough evidence for a trial?  If so, take this evidence and go.  But, it seems that they want additional evidence over what they already gave.  Shouldn’t that have been done by them?  Okay, that’s one side of the argument.  The other side is why doesn’t the other side want to hear more?  What are they afraid of?  Why are they refusing to ask for more evidence?  Or is it a time thing–this will drag on and on, and neither side are going to get their points across to the other side anyway, and the senators may as well vote?

Well, I am not going to take sides in this whole thing.  It is a mess, and everyone is to blame.  STOP BICKERING!  

I know that as many people who hate our current president, there were as many who hated our past president.  Regardless, they are who God allowed as leaders of our country.  Now, why God allows this is another question.  Is it to teach us something we wouldn’t learn any other way?  Like touching a hot stove.  You can tell your child over and over again not to touch it because it will burn, but until the child touches something hot, they don’t get it.  Are we stubborn enough not to learn without harsh lessons?  I don’t know.

So, since we are all different, why can we not accept that people will also think differently?  Isn’t this why we have elections?  To find out who thinks differently, and who thinks the same?  I am really tired of the feeling that I must think just like someone diversity people conceptelse.  And, who is this someone else that I must think like?  I think it is the person who yells the loudest.  So, if I don’t think like them, am I a hater?  I don’t think so.  

Why am I afraid to share what I think with the general public?  Will you think I am too conservative?  Will you think I am too liberal?  Will you think I am in the middle with no opinions and willing to be swayed with the wind?  Does this really matter?

I am going to come out with a radical idea.  LOVE!  People throw that word around, but I love2don’t see it much on any side.  It seems they just love their opinion, and think other opinions are unlovable.  People are belittled for stating their opinions.  They are called names.  Some people lose their jobs.  Some people lose their friends and family.  For what?  Something that can change every four years?

As a Christ follower, truth comes from Scripture.  So, I am going to look at what it says about love.  I have been to a million weddings (okay, that’s an exaggeration) where the “Love Chapter” is read. 1 Corinthians 13 — but what is that chapter really saying about love?

Verses 1 through 3 tell what is NOT love:  

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.  And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.  If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing. 

So, if I am eloquent, and I can speak in many languages, and if I can be smart and understand all science and mathematics and understand the future, and I am faithful, and if I give myself to good causes and sacrifice myself, but I have no love, it means absolutely NOTHING,  

That begs the questions, so what is love then?  And this chapter of the Bible goes on to describe exactly what is love:

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

Verse four just rocks and describes what I don’t see going on.  Here is the list:

  • Patient and kind
  • Doesn’t envy or boast (no jealousy)
  • Not arrogant (not my ideas are loftier than yours)
  • Not rude
  • Does not insist on its own way (not “my way or the highway”)
  • Not irritable or resentful (not anger over differences)
  • Doesn’t celebrate wrongdoing
  • Celebrates truth
  • Puts up with all things
  • Has belief
  • Has hope
  • Has endurance

I have seen many things on social media that makes me sad.  One is the vitriol people use about others who think differently than we do.  Here is an example of what I saw:

“. . . . I implore any supporters of this lawless, immoral beast occupying the White House to please unplug from my friend group. I don’t want you here. Neighbors, co-workers, family members, your values are just too harmful to the well-being of all life on this planet. Please just go . . . .”

I was shocked when I saw this.  I couldn’t imagine a progressive or a conservative asking people who think and speak differently to go.  If we continue this way, one group asking the other to no longer be friends, how do we have open forums?  How can we feel free to speak out thoughts?  Well, I guess that its a dumb question, because I do not speak about politics except with probably a couple people.  My thoughts are pretty independent, and my feelings about the hate that is going on is very strong.

I will talk about my faith.  No talking about politics.  Why?  The following verses in Corinthians kind of speaks to it.  Prophesy, speaking languages and being really smart and clever will all fade away.  All those things we brag about are nothing in the big scheme of things.  What will last is LOVE.  Why?  Because God is LOVE.  He is eternal.  So why would I get all riled up over something that will not last?  What will last is God and who he is.  I will gladly discuss that, and listen, and learn from those.  I will not argue.

So, as all this goes on, and during this year, with the elections just months away, I want you to know a few things from me personally.

  1. I will not unfriend you because we don’t think the same.
  2. I will not call anyone names.
  3. I will be sad as I see other people saying mean things about people who don’t think like they do.
  4. I will hope and pray, that no matter what the outcomes are, that we will accept them with grace.
  5. I will still stand on God’s faithfulness that He is in charge, and He will allow things for our good, and for our learning.
  6. I will hope you will still consider me your friend, even if I am different than you.

love one another