Thursday, August 12, 2010

A Well Deserved Rebuke

Let a righteous man strike me—it is a kindness; let him rebuke me—it is oil on my head. (Psalm 141:5)
I started blogging a couple of years ago, seeing it as a fun and creative outlet to express myself in matters of interest to me, including but not limited to Christian apologetics, conservative political commentary and anything related to Italy. Because my subject matter was going to include the two great taboos of polite conversation—religion and politics--I was well aware that many of my posts would be controversial. But I was determined that my writing would nevertheless be grace-filled and redemptive. Though I occasionally enjoy being provocative and am not above poking fun, the last thing I want to do is offend people.

I try to live by the Scripture verse I have posted on this blog as well as my Facebook profile:

Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, (I Peter 3:15)

All too often, though, I fall flat on my face. Today, for example, I ran across an editorial (at, of all places) lamenting our national debt and comparing what it calls the United States’ “Mickey Mouse Economy” to that of Russia in 1998. This is indeed a serious and terrifying state of affairs about which I have written elsewhere. I had written about my disappointment in the Bush Administration’s abandonment of fiscal conservatism, allowing runaway spending to accumulate debts as high as $400+ billion dollars in its final year, and how the Obama Administration has more than tripled that, forecasting deficits of more than one trillion dollars a year as far as the eye can see.

Though this is a serious and frightening state of affairs that could have some dire consequences for all of us, I was in a bit of a flippant mood today and made a poor attempt at humor by posting the article on Facebook along with some commentary. Picking up on the “Mickey Mouse” theme, I made an attempt at rewriting the lyrics of the Mickey Mouse Fan Club March Song, using the spelling of our President’s name instead of Mickey’s. (I have since deleted it and won’t repeat it here. Trust me. it was not worth reading.)

I didn’t think it would provoke any reaction, but an hour or two later I got the following comment from my beloved niece:

So I'm not trying to argue ... and if you throw a bunch of political figures at me it wouldn't mean anything because I could care less about politics and really don't know that much about it honestly ... but I do know respect. Have you ever thought of just going with the flow and supporting the president because you're American and he is our president? At least have respect for him ... I didn't like Bush but I still had respect because he was our president that we as Americans put there. Not putting down your opinion, you know I love you Uncle Leo :-), and you know I respect how you feel. Just saying have some faith and respect. It could always be worse.
Ouch! You would think I would remember that I Peter 3:15 is not limited to apologetics or defending the faith, that I should also show gentleness and respect when discussing politics, indeed any aspect of life. Thank you, Joanna, for setting your uncle straight.

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