It’s easy for me to see and analyze the world’s problems. I mean, they are all so obvious that it isn’t hard for me to see them and pick them apart.
Yes, I am that guy. I go to a retail store and I can pick apart the service or cleanliness or merchandising. Twenty years in retail will do that to you. I go to a restaurant and I can quickly analyze all the things they could do to serve me faster and better. Eating too much will do that to you. I can go to a car dealership, a movie, wherever, and I can quickly analyze the problems and come up with a list of solutions. I simply know what I like and think everyone should cater to me.
I can do it with churches too. And, best of all, I can do it with people. Yes, I have the ability to look around, see everyone’s problems and have answers for how they could all live better lives. As long as it doesn’t affect me of course. Or worse, cause me to look in the mirror.
I wrote a post recently about “the church’s” outrage at government and how misplaced I think it can be at times (see it here Outrage for What?). Here’s the thing with outrage. It’s a good emotion when it leads me to do something about it. You see, it’s when I take the outrage and do something about it that I gain credibility. Complainers are not credible people. Resolvers are credible people. Sure, complainers can stand on their soapboxes that look like pulpits or blogs or books or podcasts or social media and get noticed yet their complaining rarely resolves anything.
The other day, I ran across a blog post from 2003 and the writer was “debunking the myth of Mother Teresa.” He had reasons why she wasn’t really healing the sick or protecting the poor and he certainly blasted her for her Catholic faith. He gave examples of things she said and wrote to cast her as a non-Protestant at best and a non-believer at worst. As a bit of a radical in my faith tradition, I found myself agreeing with much of her thoughts the author was castigating and found others to be insignificant. He did mention some of what he reported was said or written in 1984. Oh my, if people went back 30 years on me to find out what I was up to they may bolt and chain the church doors to keep me out.
For a moment, I was outraged at the blog author and sat in my chair questioning what efforts he was making first-hand with the poor and sick. However, the longer I thought about it, the more I thought it was me who needed to examine myself for my outrage. What have I done recently to help the poor? How have I reached out lately to touch the sick?
I pray my outrage will continue as long as it drives me to right wrongs, to help others and to see with the eyes of God so I can be his instrument of peace and hope on earth.
Grace and peace.
This post was originally written and posted at Word For Today.