Why has the Peloton commercial where a husband buys his wife an exercise bike been recently labeled sexist?
Why is nearly every speech made by an elected official scrutinized to the nth degree until someone can find a reason to be offended?
Why is Chick-Fil-A regularly in the news when it makes adjustments? Why are there so many more people being labeled as racist, sexist, or bullies than ever before?
I believe there are real racist, real sexist and real bullies in our world. I believe there are people who abuse others, look down on others, and mistreat others. And I wholeheartedly condemn them for their abusive, evil behavior. However, most of the news reports we get about racist or sexist or bullies are so far from the real thing it is actually hurting the cause of those who seek to address the real issue in society. I've noticed recently that when someone says something another person disagrees with or does not like we try to label them as a bully or racist.
Why is all this happening? I submit one reason is because we live in a first world country. We live in a boring first world society. Food, water, hygiene, and healthcare is a guarantee for nearly everyone in our circle of influence. We have no big worries. We have so much technology we can play games while we sit at red lights. We can adjust our thermostats (which many people in other countries do not even have) with our phones. We search for entertainment everywhere we go. Almost every restaurant has a row of televisions we can watch and if we don't find them entertaining our hand-held device will become our entertainment with just the touch of an icon.
I believe we are becoming a society that is starved for drama. I think we are so starved for drama and so bored with our easy lives that some people have to make "drama" out of nothing. We live in a time where people will take up causes that are not even causes. Some people are vehemently defending individuals or groups who are not even offended themselves. I'm asking myself, with the latest Peloton fiasco, is there really a group of women out there who would be offended if their husband bought them a $2200 exercise bike with a $40 membership for the training? My experience over the years is that my wife has asked for exercise equipment for birthdays and Christmas. We really need to teach the next generation to "get a life!" We must stop focusing on trivial and meaningless issues in our culture and live for something higher and stronger.
I Offer a Solution:
Prioritize the plans of God! Get busy serving God with all your heart. Make His priorities your priorities. Serving the Lord with all your heart means your life will be filled with great moments of drama and wonder. Stop getting lost in the things of this world. Stop spending so much time striving for the lap of luxury or the pathway to comfort and get busy serving God and loving others. Stop worrying about what others are saying about people and start giving your life in sacrifice for others so God can be glorified in your life. Find ways to bless those around you in need. The greatest way to enjoy life and finding great fulfillment is to do things that matter for eternity. (Matthew 25:34-40)
Here is a list of ways you can become an encouragement:
- Call your pastor, and ask Him can you meet him for coffee and pray for him (instead of letting him pray for you).
- Ask your pastor who in the church will have needs over the holidays. Are there single moms, widows or families that will need some food or help? Find a way to help them or invite them to your home for the holidays.
- Are there any widows or widowers on your street or in your neighborhood who need some attention and care? Can you help them with yard work or chores? Does he need someone to chat with occasionally? Many who live alone will talk for an hour once you get them started. It’s not much work for you, but it is a huge blessing to them.
- Are their rehabilitation facilities in your area with men or women who just need encouragement? Get your minister or elder to go with you to visitation times and meet those who have no family visiting them. Sometimes just a kind word will make them stick with a program that can be life changing.
- Ask the pastor in your church if there are young families who may need "free baby-sitting" for a date night. Offer your services.
- Volunteer at a shelter to serve meals and clean up. Meet and greet those who are homeless in your community and share a story of your faith with them.
- Go by the local nursing home facilities and ask the coordinators if there are elderly people who do not have local family visiting them regularly. Become a regular visitor to someone who needs a friend. Share your story with them.
- If you have ever had major surgery you know hospitals are full of patients and their family members who could use a little hope, encouragement and prayer. Set a day or so a month to drop by the waiting room of a few hospitals. A few bags of chips or crackers and cookies can be a great blessing, especially to families with small children. Asking them how you can pray for them means a lot to those stuck in a waiting room for hours.
In the comment threads below feel free to add many other ways you can get your mind off our cultural craziness and serve the Lord! I know we as true Christ-followers can change a culture if we will become what God purposed for us. Ephesians 2:10 says we were created for "good works." Let's all get busy.