“Me Too”

“Me Too”

Do you want to make your pastor roll his eyes? All you have to do is copy and paste or share one of those posts that says “73% of you won’t share this post but I love Jesus so I am sharing it, and if you don’t share it, God won’t bring you a pony for Christmas” (or something like that). It is nonsense. It is to the digital age what a chain letters was to our parents and grandparents. And worse yet, it’s bad theology. When I see good Christians posting bad theology all I can do is roll my eyes and pray for the future.

On occasion though there are other posts that get copied and shared over and over again that are different. There are posts that make you sit up and pay attention. This week there were a lot of posts like that. It did not make me roll my eyes, but I did have to wipe many tears.
Here’s an example from a dear friend of mine:

That was one post, shared by over 12 million women, and those are just the ones capable and willing to tell their stories. I am confident that there are many more for who me the reality of their abuse at the hands of men is still too painful to share. And we better not forget all of the millions, nay billions, of women who are not on Facebook.

Lately we cannot go a week without one group or another being exploited and abused. All of them outrage me. All of them make me shake my head in disgust and the reality that we should all know better. However, I am a white male and so the vast majority of those abuses don’t directly affect my life. So my disgust and outrage tend to be second hand.

This time though it hit me differently. This time it hit me where I live. I am the father of two daughters. Two gorgeous little girls who are growing up in this world. A world where convicted rapists are given lighter sentences because “20 minutes of action” shouldn’t ruin his entire life. Where “boys will be boys” is still an acceptable excuse for sexual harassment or assault. Where women are not believed when they report an assault, or are blamed because of what they were wearing. (Maybe I ought to let Michaela take those Kung Fu lessons she’s been asking for?)

Native Americans, people of color, women, Muslims, and LGBTQ (and probably some others I cannot think of right now) are all abused and exploited and discriminated against on a regular basis. And when it happens, we try to make the conversation about something else. Someone shoots up a school and we talk about the government coming to take away our guns. It’s ridiculous. As a pastor, as a son, as a husband, as a father I want to fix it. I want to make it better. I am wracking my brain trying to figure out a way to fix this for my girls and all the girls out there who will someday, unfortunately, be able to share that post. But, as it happens, I don’t need to because, once again, Jesus has us covered:

“I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another.”  John 13:34 

My youngest daughter started pre-school this week. She is so excited. She loves her classroom and her classmates and her teachers. We decided to send her to pre-school not to learn how to read and write, but how to play with others, how to share, how to treat others as she wants to be treated, to love as Jesus loves. It is a process to be sure. But when I see “me too” popping up, it makes me think that we might all need to go back to pre-school and relearn how to treat each other.

To all of my female friends who posted “me too” I am so sorry. You do not deserve it. It is most definitely not your fault.

I will always believe you,
Pastor Mike

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