Everyone seems angry these days. About the upcoming (but not soon enough) election. About immigration policies that are too strict. About immigration policies that are too lax. About Susan G. Komen pulling support from Planned Parenthood. About Planned Parenthood advocates pulling support from the Komen foundation.
Can we all just stop being angry for a moment? Not that there isn’t a place for anger. We should never be indifferent to injustice or blow off oppression. But can we all just take a moment and focus on the good?
Whatever your stance on abortion, it cannot be denied that Planned Parenthood has saved many lives by providing affordable (often free) screenings and treatment to low-income women.
Whatever your stance on their funding choices, it cannot be denied that the Komen Foundation has saved many lives due to the ground-breaking research they help to fund.
We do not have to give our time, money or energy to people or organizations that do not share our values, but we don’t have to vilify them either. We can vehemently disagree with some person or organization and still not negate the good they do in the world.
It is quite possible that those churches that refuse to ordain women still share the Good News of the Jesus Christ in ways that people can hear and respond to. Often, they do it quite well. And while I’m not going to send my child to a school supported by an organization that believes such things, I don’t have to see them as the enemy. I am a huge proponent of gun control and very anti-gun in general, but I know quite a few gun owners who make the world at large, and my world in particular, a better place to be.
We should never let the bad cause us to lose sight of all that is good.
As you are taking a moment to focus on the good that other people do, take a moment to own all the good that you, yourself do. Perhaps you are in a place where you don’t feel like you are making that much a difference. You should know that the good you do matters. Whether it is checking on your elderly neighbor, telling the girl behind the counter she is doing a good job, making sure your kids know they are loved or rebuilding the economy of a third-world nation. Good is good. We don’t have to vie for the highest score.
So keep your righteous indignation and hold on to your anger over injustice, but don’t let it overshadow that good that is being done, nor all of the good that you do.
–Rev. Anne Russ