This week’s blog could be a number of things, and I considered all on this list:
1) A look back at 2013 and all the funny or sappy or memorable family moments (not really my style)
2) A look forward at what things I want to do better or what I want to eliminate in 2014 (yeah, so the whole world can hold me accountable? No, thanks)
3) General commentary on the world (tends to be my theme, I think)
4) None of the above – adoption only (scratched for lack of material, sadly)
5) Blank space – tabula rasa style – for deeper thoughts (think more Rousseau, less Jack Handy. . . and bonus points if you can identify both without the use of Google or the like). (For a side, side note – for confirmation that I didn’t use Google to figure out Rousseau, Dr. Wilkerson at LU – if he’s still alive? – can confirm my “B” in “Great Thinkers of the Western World”)
Instead, I have had something on the brain for a few weeks now. A lot of you are fans of these guys:
You know them – the Robertsons from West Monroe, Louisiana. And I will confess that the kids and I watch as well. Most of the first season was really funny, then the second season was pretty funny too. Since then – all staged and predictable – bring on the next reality show for me. Jaclyn and I also make the kids DVR it so that we can watch for editorial purposes (Phil likes to pine on about mating too much for us) before giving the kids our blessing.
I bring them up because, as you no doubt have seen and heard over the past few weeks, the patriarch – Phil – has burned up the news media after an interview he gave with GQ magazine. (Phil, for those not familiar with the Dynasty, is the one on the far right) When asked about his take on the state of the country in general, his commentary turned to his disagreement with the sexual orientations of anyone not monogamously heterosexual, to sum it up. In addition, he threw in his experiences with pre-segregational Louisiana, creating a little more noise racially as well. But, the lion’s share of disgust was aimed at his commentary on the former. At the end, A&E (where the show is aired) suspended Phil indefinitely, and Cracker Barrel restaurants also pulled items from their shelves (for less than 48 hours, I believe).
Boy, did that tick the Christians off! Petitions were signed, boycotts were demanded, Facebook pages were liked, and everything minus the yellow ribbon ’round the old oak tree was used in support of Phil and the rest of the Robertson clan. A modern-day martyr for the Christian faith had been created. And, my humble opinion being what it is, I say. . . . . over what?
Those who label themselves as Christians love to pick a fight. We will fight with Disney over inclusion in gay families for a weekend. We will fight with Congress over their stymying of Hobby Lobby or Chick-Fil-A with government-imposed insurance practices. We will fight, dadgummit! Just watch!
I am often asked, due to my current employment status as a school administrator, of both my opinion of inclusion of church-related items, ideas, etc., in public school settings, and just why things have “gotten worse” in that arena over the past half-century. My answer has evolved over my educational career, and may still. But, it currently sits on a pretty determined spot: I don’t fight to allow Evangelical Christian ideas, items, and people into our schools. Go ahead and throw your stones. Pick your fight. flood my email – firstname.lastname@example.org (bring it on), whatever you need to do. I have more than one reason, if you would like to hear me out for a moment.
The first is – it’s our job(s) to bring up our children in the faith, not the schools’. Not just “us” as parents. But “us” as the church (body of believers, not brick and mortar building) to make sure that each others’ children receive the Word of God, just correction, and righteous path-lighting. . . not someone else’s.
The second, and paramount to me, is this: once we open that door – allowing religious people, ideas, and things – and weave them into the fabric of our educational system, we cannot close it on anyone or anything else. I’ve said this for a while now. I don’t mind that we don’t read the story of Christ’s birth at our elementary schools, because I don’t want my impressionable and trusting young brood hearing the story of Muhammad or Buddha as anything more than another religion or a part of history. I don’t want it given as “another option.” And for those of you who have differed with me on this, and still contend that I should use my position as a platform for my faith, please take a moment to read the following:
Is that story real? Yes. Who will win? I don’t know. But, I know that within the laws of our government, they are well within their right and . . should they get even a sampling of a foothold on this – watch out!
So, without going off on a political tangent (or further off, I suppose). Let me sum this week’s rant up in this:
In 2014, if you are a believer, I encourage you to pick a fight.
Not with political figures (please read up on impeachment before you buy the bumper sticker, Bubba).
Not with mainstream media.
Not with oil prices, taxes, or anything else that Satan has put in our way to distract us from the real and most important battle.
Pick a fight with the lostness around you. Pick a fight with the feeling of apathy towards those you see every day and don’t pray for their everlasting salvation. Pick a fight with Satan, saddle up on the strength of the Word and of God’s everlasting truth, and reach those around you for Christ without pointing fingers at their lifestyle, their choices, or their opinions. Those are distractions. The real battle is being waged for real souls that are destined for a real hell.
Suddenly, whether or not Phil gets Season 6 isn’t so important anymore.