People Who Are Not Respected

” . . . people who are not respected . . . “
“There are two things that make me sad, and a third that makes me angry: a soldier who has become poor, intelligent people who are not respected, and a righteous person who turns to evil.”  (Sirach 26:28, an apocryphal book of the Old Testament) 

Patti and I were looking over some things in our driveway late the other evening when we turned around and saw the work of this masterful builder.

I couldn’t help but think of the line from Sir Walter Scott,

    “What a tangled web we weave

     When first we practice to deceive.”

Wow! This guy had one tangled web and probably managed to deceive quite a few other critters into flying into that web because by the next morning there were quite a few holes and no spider or critters to be seen.

I am amazed by the engineering skills required to construct this three foot diameter web in midair, and have great respect for the intelligence displayed by the spider.  Maybe you think I’m crazy to attribute intelligence to a creature such as this, but I would suggest that God endowed it with some pretty significant skills and smarts.  Actually, its intelligence caused me to wonder . . .

As I’ve observed many of the debates described in print and displayed across the air waves, I’ve grown more troubled by a common thread that weaves through them.  I’ve noticed how the side explaining their point is convinced that the other side has been manipulated, coerced, fooled, duped, or worn down by something or someone.  The explaining side implies that the others who have been manipulated, coerced, fooled, duped, or worn down by something have arrived at their decision or stand by a process without merit or integrity.  This further implies that their decision is without merit or integrity, and those who made the decision lack the intelligence to make a decision with merit and integrity.  It further implies that those explaining their side of the argument are intelligent folks who arrived at their decision after thoughtful and often prayerful consideration, as opposed to those who simply succumbed to having been manipulated, coerced, fooled, duped, or worn down by something or someone.  Whew, that’s a mouthful . . .

We have many tough issues facing us today, but I doubt we’ll get very far on any of them as long as we continue in this process.  I agree with the writer of Sirach when he says, “There are two things that make me sad, and a third that makes me angry: a soldier who has become poor, intelligent people who are not respected . . . ”  I’ve come to respect the intelligence of spiders.  Sometimes I have to ask God to forgive me when I fall into this trap in the midst of a disagreement and forget to respect the intelligence of those with whom I disagree and the process that brought them to their opinion, decision, or stand.  I pray that God will help me remember to respect first, then . . . How about you?

Blessings and Peace,

Gary

Pastor, Cross Lanes United Methodist Church

Cross Lanes, West Virginia

Help save lives! For more information on my book, “A Relentless Hope: Surviving the Storm of Teen Depression,” visit http://www.survivingteendepression.com.

My other book, “Wednesday Wonderings: Spiritual Journaling Through a Lens” is available at http://www.wipfandstock.com and http://www.amazon.com.

Check out my video, “Teens Surviving the Storm” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o1hSpxC_G24

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~ by revgenelson on September 16, 2015.

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