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  • "A Musing Pastor"

Don't make it worse.

When a structure is engulfed in flames, the general rule is to extinguish the flames rather than air drop 1,000 gallons of jet fuel on the thing. Sounds like common sense to me but then again, I'm no firefighting expert.

This morning I read the millionth article (an exaggeration) describing violence at a political rally. I was numbed by the headline and then I looked more closely at the attached photo and saw this.

There is a protester, there are participants, there is even a security officer! I zeroed in on the young man near the top of the photo just about in the center of frame. He looks to be in the neighborhood of 10-14 years of age. His beaming smile caught me off guard. Most of the adults look concerned and agitated.

Of the approximately 35 people in the frame, only two have huge smiles on their faces. The protester and the young boy are enjoying the moment.

I get why the protester is smiling. He has made his point and gained his 5 minutes of fame. Well, that and a citation to pay for public disturbance or some other infraction. I am saddened to see the young man enjoying the chaos and tension. WHAT ARE WE DOING TO OUR YOUNG PEOPLE????

Sorry for yelling just now, but I had to release some frustration.

If we ever hope for a renewed future in our country and world, then let's stop air dropping 1,000 gallons of jet fuel on a blazing structure. Oh the teachable moments we need to salvage. Hopefully, the parents of the smiling teenager have debriefed him and taught him the best response to this kind of chaos and anger driven behavior. If we aren't a voice of reason and truth, then we join in the cacophony of noise that burns the very fabric out of our heritage as Americans. I would go so far as to suggest, if we aren't speaking reason and truth to our children and grandchildren, then we are in great danger of a divine judgment.

"Therefore, whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. “And

whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me. But if anyone causes one of these little

ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a large millstone hung around his neck

and to be drowned in the depths of the sea. “Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to

sin! Such things must come, but woe to the man through whom they come! (Matthew 18:4-7, NIV)

Celebrating divisiveness, anger, and outrage are never going to move our country forward. It just won't. It matters not who you will support in the fall elections. No candidate will bring the much needed peace to our world. Only God can accomplish this and has promised believers as much (Isaiah 9:6). It does mean a great deal how you raise your family and what values you offer them. Use this time of turmoil to live out the following mandate.

"He has showed you, O man, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to

love mercy and to walk humbly with your God." (Micah 6:8, NIV)

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