Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Words Don’t Hurt…or Do They? - Derksen

These days, the airwaves are filled with articles about bullying, as if this is a new phenomenon. During his 3rd to 8th grade at a Catholic private school, our youngest son was bullied repeatedly and the more we tried to stop it, the worse it got. It seemed that no one wanted to do anything about it and our son spent many days hating his school experience instead of looking forward.

Eventually, after one summer’s growth spurt, he managed to put the bully in his place. That very misguided boy tried a couple of times after that to regain his control over our son but with no success.

Today, the Internet has become the tool of choice for bullies. They post messages of hate for the entire world to see, targeting someone who, in all probability, has done nothing to earn the unbearable comments. Teens have committed, or attempted to commit, suicide because of this practice. The perpetrators walk around as if they’ve done nothing wrong.

When I worked in a newspaper office for a couple of years, I was astounded to hear the back stabbing that went on. As soon as one employee left the room, the words of disrespect and jealousy, even hate, flowed freely. At other times, I’ve over heard people speak words of hate about another person who may be a neighbor or someone who attends the same church.

We all believe that murder is wrong, even the person who commits the crime. But the Bible, in Jesus words, is very clear about what constitutes murder. He said in Mathew 5:21 and 22 “You have heard that our ancestors were told, ‘You must not murder. If you commit murder, you are subject to judgment. But I say, if you are even angry with someone, you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, you are in danger of being brought before the court. And if you curse someone, you are in danger of the fires of hell.

People who treat another with hate, disrespect, and anger, are as guilty of committing murder as the person who is charged and judged for the crime. Bullies murder a person’s soul. They destroy their target’s self-respect and make them victims in the eyes of the people who watch it go on but do nothing. People who attend church, all the while harboring hate toward another member, are committing murder in their hearts.

Murder is serious. That is something we all agree on but do we do what we can to keep the evil one from making us all murderers at large. Do we deal with issues in a biblical manner so that anger and hatred can be rooted out and do we treat others as we wish to be treated? Tear it out. Get rid of the evil inside and watch how much brighter the sunshine will be tomorrow.

Barbara Ann Derksen

1 comment:

Peter Black said...

Our Lord Jesus -- gentle, meek and mild -- nails us again and again, with His cutting-to-the-core of an issue, doesn't He?
Barbara, in this fine piece you remind me of my need to be on guard against what I would call incipient sin.
This, I think, is what Jesus recognized as so dangerous in hate and derogatory talk, or the lustful look and such; He knew these were initiators, potenially leading to the ripened fruit of full-blown evil acts.

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