You’ve seen the bumper stickers, COEXIST printed out in letters representing all religions. It sounds good, but truth is a funny thing – it doesn’t play well with others. And you believe you have truth, then the clash of ideas enters.
The same goes for politics. We’ve seen a nation split. The Blue Dogs and Centrists and Statesmen have all been supplanted by ideologues. The middle ground is viewed as compromise.
I’ve tried to reach out to millennials and atheists and those of different color or religion in these pages. I’ve done so with honesty, hoping to push my middle-aged self into uncomfortable realms so I can better understand.
But what I’ve learned is that in this world of extremes, commonality and togetherness seems to be a lost art. And the Internet brings out the worst in people. I’ve been silent here for a while because of those who lob online and offline insults, ready to jump at the slightest hint of imperfection.
It’s exhausting. But here I am again.
Giving Kindness Another Chance
I was asked by Patheos to help lead a 30 Day Kindness Project. Based on the book by Shaunti Feldhahn, The Kindness Challenge: Thirty Days to Improve Any Relationship the challenge is meant to help us lead a revolution of the self.
And that might be the answer.
We can’t fix our politics. This is the most bizarre world I’ve ever seen.
And we can’t fix our world affairs. That’s equally nutty.
Our racial divide is deep and our economics are always threatened.
Yes, I’m skeptical that Love Conquers All. The Latin Amor Vincat Omnia is beaten down by the real life shootings in Chicago or the protests that line the streets or the vitriol on talk shows.
I’m skeptical about kindness. Jesus thought it was a good plan and it’s a fruit of his presence in me, so I’m willing to try. Frankly, the other stuff isn’t working so well.
The kindness challenge is simply pick one person in your life and exhibit outrageous kindness every single day. The rules are simple:
- POSITIVITY: Say nothing negative/negatively about your person either to them or about them to someone else.
- PRAISE: Every day, find one positive thing that you can sincerely praise or affirm about your person and tell them, and tell someone else.
- KINDNESS: Every day, do a small act of kindness or generosity for them.
So, will you join me in this effort? I’ll be writing along the way and would love to hear from you about your adventure.
Sign up here