Hey you, Open Letter.
I know you’re passionate about your self-proclaimed cause for humanity. I get that you’re passionate about letting everyone know how they’re wrong and you’re right. I know you justify having a smug attitude by claiming to enlighten others. But you’re not enlightening anyone.
The tone of your letter prevents anyone who disagrees with you from accepting what you’re saying. The words you choose make you sound intellectually aggressive, but practically brutish. To be honest, you come off as a bully more than someone wanting to start a conversation.
You say everyone should be okay with yoga pants because you look gross in them anyways? That’s cool. You say no yoga pants should be banned because dudes are gross? That’s cool too.
You think vaccines are sold by the Illuminati? Sounds probable. You think anti-vaxxers are purposefully trying to kill your kid? Logic salutes you.
You think our President has a secret agenda? Yeah, maybe. You think our President is God’s mouthpiece? Sounds scriptural to me.
The problem with these open letters isn’t the content. It’s the fact that they’re so divisive in the church. They’re filled with snarky jargon (like the first few paragraphs in this post) and belittling verbiage. It’s not just the open letters either. It’s the Facebook posts. The status updates. The subtle jabs in the comment sections.
All of this junk sounds an awful lot like what the Apostle Paul addresses in Romans 14. The church is splitting and people are arguing amongst themselves. Some believe that eating meat offered to idols is an abomination. Others believe that God created everything and they are free to partake of what they choose. Some believe that it is only on specific days that worship services should be held. Others believe that every day is holy unto the Lord. Each side is passionate. Each side believes they’re right. Each side has scriptural support to backup their claims. But check out what Paul says about it.
Romans 14:3 Let not the one who eats despise the one who abstains, and let not the one who abstains pass judgment on the one who eats, for God has welcomed him. 4 Who are you to pass judgment on the servant of another? It is before his own master that he stands or falls. And he will be upheld, for the Lord is able to make him stand.
He says: quit judging each other! Quit writing open letters – even to people who write open letters! One day the person on the other side of the aisle will stand before God and answer for the choices they made. It’s not your place to slam the gavel and pass judgement with your words. Instead, we are called to lovingly accept others, regardless of their beliefs. Because without love, even the sweetest of truth is painfully jarring to the ear.
The reality is, when you get to heaven it will be full of anti-vaxxers. It’s going to be full of people who wore yoga pants. It’s going to be full of people who voted for President Obama. And I’m pretty sure that’s the way God intends it to be.
P.S. It may even have some Tigers fans. Maybe.