Everyone who knows me has heard me tell war stories from a lifetime on the road. Just yesterday, I told Sue about an encounter at McDonalds in Redding, California that went like this:
“May I help you?”
“Yes, I’d like an iced coffee with nothing in it, just good old boring black coffee, nothing more. That’s black: b-l-a-c-k.”
I said this because I am well aware that McDonalds always puts milk in their iced coffee, so I made the above comment with a smile of early morning cheer.
Moments later I was handed a nice cup of iced joe – with cream!
I laughed and smiled and said, “Do you remember my saying ‘black’ and even spelling it for you?”
Her reply was one for the ages: “Oh, you didn’t say you didn’t want cream!”
I tell stories like this all the time just for the fun of it.
But this morning, I woke up feeling guilty. Why? Because unity has changed my perspective entirely.
Was that encounter a metaphor for the different languages we speak as Christians? And if so, wasn’t I being quite judgmental, not to her face – I was very friendly and even accepted the coffee her way – but behind her back, in the same spirit as gossip? Yes, I was. When I am the one using odd language as perceived by someone else, do I enjoy being mocked?
When I encounter a Christian with views different than mine and I whisper behind their back, I am doing the exact opposite of what Jesus taught.
And when all Christians do the same thing, what does the world see?
We need to rethink how we deal with adversity, especially when it is between members of the family.
The world is watching.