You Can’t Make Me Be That

July 1, 2020

I want to tell you that I am not racist. I don’t need to tell you this as there is nothing about me which is worthy of that title. I will not allow you to make me think I am racist. I will not believe that racism is a governing paradigm in my life. Nor will I let you convince me that to notice or mention race makes me racist. I notice and mention hair color. This does not make me a hair stylist (pardon the pun, but there are mote coming). I also notice and mention the color of people’s eyes, but I am not an optometrist. I also notice and mention what people wear, how many tattoos they display and the symbolism of their jewelry, but I am not a fashion stylist. I notice their patterns of speech but am not a speech therapist and look at the way a person carries himself when he walks, though I am not a physical therapist. I sometimes form opinions about these people when I notice these things just like someone reading this may have already formed an opinion about me by just these few words, but I am not a columnist. These things do not make me a hater. They make me observant.

I talk about politics and religion publicly – I do not argue about them, I discuss them. I am willing to talk about any of the things above with any sensible person who wants to have a discussion. I am however, not willing to sit through an attack on my character, nor will I attack yours. I am not willing to listen to a harsh indicting tirade which is full of misinformed angry words which are of no value and are not able to bring anyone closer to another occupant of this earth. If you wish to be angry and spew divisive rhetoric, if you resort to name calling and character assassinations when my point of view has more merit than yours and you have nothing reasonable to share, go somewhere else and spew it at someone else. I just don’t have the time nor the stomach for a mean-spirited monologue.

But if you want to find some commonality, if you want to make a friend, if you want to really help address the issues you seem so passionate about, at least between you and me, let’s talk. Maybe we can at least understand each other and find that between the two of us there is not an insurmountable problem after all. If you are capable of having a civil conversation, I’ll make time for you. But if you just want to rant and accuse and label and continue to hate, please just leave me out of it. In fact, please leave everyone else out of it as well. The world is too small, and our lives are too short for all that nasty nonsense.

We have no record of Jesus walking on this earth arguing with angry and hateful people. In one very significant moment, He just remained silent among those angry people who wanted to defeat Him (see Matthew 26). I pray the Lord will help me know just when to keep my mouth shut.

See You SONday,

Pastor Steve

© 2020 Dr. SF Gallagher