Thursday, May 13, 2010

Devotional 5-14-10

Stop the Hate

Have you ever hit the forward button in your e- mail and then wished you could take it back? Maybe the message was funny, but the more you thought about it , a little mean or a little degrading. Maybe it was a serious message that was purporting to give you facts, but the more you thought about it the facts seemed a little too good or too bad to be true. The internet is an amazing tool. But just like everything else it can be used for both good and evil.

The hate that seems to have invaded our society has been bothering me for a long time. No party or group is innocent--all have participated. Messages get reduced to sound bites that often are very misleading. We get so caught up in our own agendas that it seems ok to take liberties to persuade others to our point of view. My husband and I have even gotten e-mails that once featured Bush and now the name and the picture have been changed to Obama, but they contained the same hate filled message. We have received ‘infomercial’ e-mails that contain at best misguided or out dated information and at worst out right lies and skewed facts. Sometimes there is a combination of truth and fiction. These seem the most insidious because they give you just enough truth to be believable until you check them out. (Often they claim to have already been checked!) All too often we assume that the printed word is fact and forward the message without checking.

As Christians we are called to love, not hate. We should be able to disagree without resorting to half-truths and innuendo. We complain about people who give Christians a bad name. If we do not want to fall into that category our e-mails should reflect our beliefs--both religious and secular. They should not put down any group in our society and they should be factual.

Dave Pelzer wrote, “Hate is a cancer that spreads one cell at a time.” It is also spread one e-mail at a time. You can help stop the hate by pausing, thinking, and checking the facts. You can stop the hate one click at a time.

Margaret Williams

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

What a thoughtful devotional, and one that seems to touch our lives every day! I couldn't agree with you more. Even when we disagree, we need to remember Christian love.

Thanks for writing.