Saturday, January 7, 2012

On the Right Side

News headlines often capture the worst side of mankind. One that broke my heart this week was about a man leaving a stadium who was beaten to a pulp. Why? He was wearing a jersey supporting the team he was rooting for. Fans from the opposing team didn't like his choice of teams nor his wardrobe. Their solution was to almost kill the guy. I shake my head and wonder what causes evil to prevail in the heart of man. I just can't understand why someone roots for evil. I pity the parent who has family members playing on opposing teams. To sit in a stadium and try rooting for someone on the other side would cause utter chaos and most likely end up with blood splattering everywhere. Perhaps cheering from a distance would be the best case scenario here.

Last night I watched a movie about a child whose parents were murdered in front of her by a mob. She devoted the rest of her life to hunting the mobsters down and killing each one of them with brutal methods. While I thought what she was doing was wrong I found myself rooting for her to get the creeps who had caused so much pain to her as an innocent child. For a moment I got caught up in blurring right from wrong. The ends justifies the means is the world's mantra. I forgot my side of the stadium is for peace and a justice that does not belong in my hands. I had quickly switched allegiances and joined forces with the evil side. A gentle nudge reminded me that I needed to keep my mind from evil lest I act out on my thoughts.

In the fourth chapter of 1 Chronicles, the man Jabez prayed and asked God to keep him from evil and to not cause pain to himself or God. Every day I wake up I pray that prayer. I do not want to be an "pain spreader." I do not want to be on evil's side of the stadium rooting for victory. Like Jabez I want to pray against spreading evil and pain. This requires daily surrendering my thoughts and words to the only One who can keep me on the right side. So today, I surrender to Him.