Rushville Republican

Church

September 20, 2013

Keeping the faith: A conspiracy of kindness

An ancient story, often retold but never without relevance, has one of the Egyptian Pharaohs making a strange request of his priests. As the sacrificial ox was being slain at the altar, the Pharaoh demands that the holy men bring to him the holiest portion of the animal, and that part of the animal most evil. In the end, the priests brought Pharaoh only the tongue.

This reflects the parallel wisdom of an equally olden Jewish proverb: “Death and life are in the power of one’s words; they hold both poison and fruit.” The ancients knew this – the power of words – but we seem to have forgotten it.

For all the trouble afflicting this world today, one of the more insidious but overlooked concerns is the failure of basic civility.

Caustic cable news sound bites, scathing Facebook comments, political mudslinging, rants and tirades against enemies and neighbors: There is a devilish eagerness to rip others apart with our dehumanizing, violent words. This loss of healthy, respectful communication is as big a factor in the loss of a society’s soul as institutional and economic collapse.

What can we do about it? Not much if we continue spewing poison and death with our mouths. But venomous words are not the only option. Our words also hold the power of life and healing. What if we put the same energy, enthusiasm and creativity into plotting others’ betterment as we did their demise?

What if we learned to lay traps of kindness, not retaliation? What if we learned to use our words and actions, not to critique and tear down others, but to uplift and motivate them?

You actually can – and this is only a reminder – you actually can have a profound, life-changing influence on the people around you. You are able, with your words, to set the trajectory for a person’s entire life. Words, used properly, can do irreversible good for the people around us.

Text Only
Church
  • Keeping the Faith: 'The Preacher' I grew up with a lot of religious rules. To violate these rules was to subject oneself to the judgment of God. If you had a fundamentalist upbringing, you may be familiar with some of these restrictions. No drinking, no smoking, no dancing, no playin

    August 15, 2014

  • Church Briefs First Baptist Church of RushvilleSometimes it is difficult to know who you can trust. Someone at first sight may seem like a trustworthy person, but when you least expect it, you get blindsided. Even the most trustworthy person may let you down somet

    August 15, 2014

  • Religion briefs Gay SD prep coach will keep job at private schoolDELL RAPIDS, S.D. (AP) - A volleyball coach at a private Catholic school in South Dakota who has publicly announced he’s gay says he’s being allowed to keep his job.Nate Alfson announced he was gay las

    August 15, 2014

  • Two words that changed my life This week is a hallmark in the lives of the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage and me. Forty-three years ago this week, we began a journey that has just become better with each year. That is the benefit of marrying up.Getting married was not somethin

    August 15, 2014

  • Religion Briefs Aid group: American with Ebola improvingATLANTA (AP) - A second American who came down with Ebola in Liberia is now hospitalized in Atlanta.SIM missionary Nancy Writebol has joined Samaritan’s Purse Dr. Kent Brantly at Emory University Hospital, wher

    August 8, 2014

  • And the heat goes on... and on... and on This past week found me in a bit of trouble with the Gracious Mistress of the Parsonage... well, more than normal. It has become rather normal for me to be in trouble with her. No matter how hard I try “not to be,” it always is “to be.”This week was

    August 8, 2014

  • Church Briefs Walnut Ridge Friends Meeting Walnut Ridge Friends Meeting, rural Carthage, will host a welcome meal and ice cream social for its new pastor and wife, Jerry and Teresa Alexander, Aug. 17, after worship. Anyone in the community is invited to attend. Wo

    August 8, 2014

  • The man behind the curtain What do Kenosha, Wisconsin, and Cape Cod, Massachusetts, have in common? Besides the fact that they are both splendid, waterfront communities, probably not much. Except this: Seventy-five years ago this week, these towns were the first public release

    August 8, 2014

  • Things I have learned in my lifetime In celebrating my recent birthday, I found myself caught up in a case of nostalgia. I never imagined I would really get this old. Not that I am old, mind you, but I have reached the point in life I never thought I would when I was younger. Had I know

    August 1, 2014

  • What a wonderful world This coming week marks the birthday of a man who Bing Crosby called, “the beginning and the end of music in America.” Born in the sweltering heat of a New Orleans’ August, the grandson of former slaves, and suffering abject poverty, that man was Loui

    August 1, 2014

Featured Ads
AP Video
Manfred, Torre and MLB Take Ice Bucket Challenge Bank of America Reaches Record $17B Settlement Holder Reassures Ferguson Community With Visit GlobalPost CEO Remembers Foley As a Brave Man Seth Meyers Rolls Out Emmy Red Carpet Obama: World Is Appalled by Murder of Journalist Israel, Militants Trade Fire After Talks Fail Pres. George W. Bush Takes Ice Bucket Challenge Pierce Brosnan's Call to Join the Expendables Changes Coming to No-Fly List Raw: IDF Footage Said to Show Airstrikes Police: Ferguson More Peaceful Raw: Aftermath of Airstrike in Gaza Raw: Thousands March on Pakistani Parliament Raw: World's Oldest Man Lives in Japan Fire Crews Tame Yosemite Fire Raw: Police Weapon Drawn Near Protesters, Media Raw: Explosions in Gaza As Airstrikes Resume Charter Schools Alter Post-Katrina Landscape Texas Gov. Perry: Indictment 'a Political Act'
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.