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Tricia did an awesome post called, “A Needed Reckoning.” She talked about many good things and poked fun at the notion of belonging to the Bad Christian Club, one of the “unforgiving ones” when it comes to covid lock downs and vaccine mandates.

Well, yeah. They disregarded people’s rights, locked us down in our homes, and violated the Nuremberg Code when it comes to medical experimentation on unwitting civilians who weren’t even granted informed consent. Don’t even get me started about the public health disaster caused by this horrific abuse of power. We haven’t even begun to survey the damage and take an inventory.

Also, I’m about 2 years into this stupid, “2 weeks to flatten the curve” crap and my county just voted to continue their emergency powers act for another year so as to well, continue their power trip. I ain’t forgiving nobody.

The issue of forgiveness comes up a lot in my Christian walk. I don’t pretend to understand it all, but I do have Someone inside who tells me when I am just holding onto foolish resentments and need more Jesus and when I need to knock some people’s heads together, kick them in them rear, and fight back. There are even times in life where forgiveness becomes immoral, like for example, just forgiving a pedophile and putting him back in charge of the children’s ministry. God never said, be so open minded your brains done fell out and all common sense just slithered out your door.

I’m really blessed to have grown up among and continue to be surrounded by atheists. I am laughing, but I was elected to the “Bad Christian’s Club” many years ago. There is no one so judgmental, so critical, so quick to point fingers as an atheist about to catch a Christian in some act of potential hypocrisy. It’s forced me to really lean into the Lord on issues around tolerance, forgiveness, unity, civility, and “as much as it lies with you,” getting along with others.

Hat is another faithful Christian with a completely different take, chatting about civility in general, politics, and does a post called, “Robert B. Talisse on “Civility” She links to his article and I think he makes some good points. There is no doubt the whole country is deeply divided and civility no longer rules the day in our political landscape. Sheesh, just last week a couple of women on TV decided to label my kind, “cockroaches.”

All in good humor here, but I now have the la cucaracha song playing in my head. Notice I said, “my kind.” I’m supposed to aim for civility towards those who don’t even recognize me as being from the same species? Never mind the silly TV women, the president of the United States also went and declared “my kind” to be a threat to our democracy.

It seems like amnesty, grace, and civility suddenly become very popular concepts when a reckoning might be coming and bullies could be held accountable. All this stuff about how “mistakes have been made on both sides,” just doesn’t seem to work for me, perhaps in part because I was never even allowed to have “a side” in the first place.

I think a huge problem in America today is that so many people don’t know what they believe or why they believe it. Quite a bit of our programming literally comes from programming and not from self examination and critical thinking. Flat out, not many people know how to think for themselves anymore. And like it or not, that is not an excuse for being a boorish bully who feels entitled to annihilate and destroy anyone who disagrees with them.

Also, we really have to learn how to relate to people as individuals and not as their labels. That part really is hard. Extremely challenging. The thing is, people don’t fit in tidy little boxes. Jesus taught us a lot about not looking at the outside of someone’s cup, the labels, the shiny exterior….or the battered one. Judas betrayed him. Peter momentarily betrayed him. You cannot find safety in your expectations of others and craft a perfect circle of people who will never let you down. Relationships are complicated and fluid and so you have to try to be true to yourself and lean into the Lord.