|Good Morning Everyone,|
Our theme for this month: “Think for yourself”
Our Bible verse for today: “A man’s wisdom gives him patience; it is his glory to overlook an offense.” Proverbs 19:11 (NIV)
Our thought for today: “Don’t give-in to the outrage culture.”
In our exploration of the theme “Think for yourself”, we started by considering why it’s important for us to not be satisfied with shallow or simplistic thinking. Now we’re spending a few days thinking about how it is that various forms of peer pressure, including criticism and public shaming, is often brought to bear upon us in order to shape our thinking, or to get us to do and say the politically correct things. Soon we will move to the third category of ways in which we sometimes allow our thinking to be controlled by others, and that is what I call being part of a cult of personality. My plan has been to take us progressively and logically through these three categories, and I actually mapped out most of the month before we even started. This morning’s devotional is simply where that progression has brought us to today.
One of the books about this subject that I’ve recently read and which I will refer to occasionally throughout this month is Congressman Dan Crenshaw’s book, “Fortitude: American Resilience in the Era of Outrage”. The reason the Congressman wrote the book is because he is so concerned about the way in which the American people are allowing themselves to be controlled by what he calls “The Outrage Culture”:
“(This book) is about outrage culture, and the newfound tendency to reflexively assume the worst of intentions when reacting to news or commentary or political discourse, and default into an emotionally driven hatred of the “other”, whoever that may be. It is the petty, weak-minded, and ultimately unproductive response to neighbors, fellow citizens, and political opponents that has been normalized and even elevated in our culture.”
Dan goes on, “It is about hypersensitivity that has infected our society, where undesirable language is the equivalent of physical violence, where an old tweet or Facebook post can be grounds for ruination and public shame, and where an absence of reason or fact encourages public indictment, moral outrage, and mob rule. Outrage culture is the weaponization of emotion, and the elevation of emotion above reason.”
In Proverbs 19:11 Solomon told us that having patience and overlooking offenses is evidence of godly wisdom and it is a virtue. In other words, we shouldn’t allow people to jerk our chains and trigger our emotions. We should not be participants in the outrage culture. Instead, our spiritual maturity should result in our ability to remain calm and rational even if others around us are being provoking in their manner and speech. In Proverbs 15:18 Solomon wrote, “A hot-tempered person stirs up conflict, but one slow to anger calms strife.” That should be us!
Surviving and thriving in the age of outrage and offense is an important strength for Christians to develop. Therefore, we will think more about this tomorrow.
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