I Heart Haters (Or at least I try)

I Heart Haters (Or at least I try) November 26, 2008

So I guess I couldn’t just go off quietly into the holidays now that I actually have some free time post-book editing. I’ll post about that in the upcoming days, but let me just tell you I went on a couple 60 hour stretches where I only got anywhere from 2-4 hours per sleep per 60 hour stretch … total! Ouch.

Anyway, something I want to talk about during this time of Thanksgiving is my ‘haters.’ I don’t understand haters. I don’t get them or why they’re so vicious. I don’t know why they think they have the right to say whatever they want, however malicious and/or false. In fact what I’ve learned is that about 99% of the people who talk trash about me have:

1. Never met me
2. Never heard me speak
3. Don’t care to try to do either #1 or #2

I had one such person at my last workshop in Nashville. He came in 40 minutes late, sat in the very last seat in the very last row in the furthest possible corner in the ballroom I was conducting my workshop in, and then he decided it would be a good idea to start yelling at me from the back of the ballroom. Who does that? Obviously this inconsiderate guy who didn’t care enough to show up on time, nor did he care enough to stay after for the 3 hour impromptu Q&A I had. In fact, we ended up getting kicked out of our ballroom because it went on to long … so we just found another room and kept it going! All of which that guy was no where to be found.

Shocker! (and I’m saying “shocker” in the absolute most sarcastic tone I possibly can!) Here’s the point: He didn’t want to stay around. He just wanted to yell. He didn’t want to dialogue. He didn’t want to listen, learn or understand anything but his nasty close-minded point of view on a topic that he probably doesn’t know a darn thing about. And I’m sure he got every ounce of satisfaction he was looking for. Good for him as he then, like a snake, slithered out of the back of the ballroom like the coward he entered, and the coward he left.

But that’s how haters operate.

And slowly but surely am I getting to realize that first hand. I take everything personally, I always have. But where the Lord is really working on me these days is to understand that those attacks are not against me, but rather against his work through me. Either way it’s still totally foreign to me. Though in this Thanksgiving time I must say that I am prayerfully trying with all I am to be thankful for my haters and for those who totally and utterly disagree and don’t understand (or want to understand) anything I’m about.

A good friend of mine and I were sitting in a restaurant in Miami in between workshops I was conducting when one such hater scenario played itself out in real time as we ate our sandwiches. Because of that situation he wrote a blog post on his feelings on the differences between a hater and a critic. It’s brilliant; and it’s something that I have truly been taking to heart. I hope you enjoy it as well. Thanks for your insight Dave!

So as I am thankful for many beautiful things this season – my new wife of just over 1 year, my family, friends, those in The Marin Foundation, and those all across the country who are reaching out to do significant things for the kingdom between the GLBT and religious communities. Just the same I also have to be thankful for my haters as the Lord literally loves them just as much as he loves me.

Much love.

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  • Big Happy

    dude sorry about the haters in the nash but it still sounded awsome with the super long Q&A sounds fun im glad the book is done cause i can't wait for it to come out

  • Adam McLane

    Great thoughts bro. I know it’s hard to hear the haters and snarls. Your post reminded me that Jesus has some serious haters (like, they got him whacked at the end of the story!) but he just used their hatred of him to reach more people.

    I’m glad you’re learning that getting hated just means that you’re speaking truth boldly. I love you and what you’re ministry is doing for the American church.

    And I think you should sell those shirts…

  • joel diaz

    thanks again for what you shared in nashville. i took home so much from your seminars, and my world view has been forever shifted.

    Christ’s peace.