First Presbyterian Church

Labels, Assumptions — Bah Humbug

God’s grace and peace to you this day!

A Facebook friend, CC, posted a music video this week of a new rendition of an old song.  When I clicked on the video it took me to a page that identified the singer as part of, Heavy Metal Band “Disturbed” .  I saw that headline and almost did not even bother to listen — I have never liked heavy metal bands!  But because CC had shared it, I decided to give it a chance.  I thought it was a beautiful rendition and like CC , I think perhaps it is better that the original version of the song.  I  ended up sharing the video with my family and we listened to it several more times.

So, I am thinking, how many surprises,  adventures or inspirations  do I miss because of my own assumptions or the labels that I attach to people and things;  like Heavy Metal bands — loud, not melodious, don’t like them!  Not listening to music is one  thing but not listening to people because of the labels we put on them is quite another and I think we do that just as easily sometime.  People with different cultural backgrounds, people with different lifestyles, people from places where we have had bad experiences.  Just this week I have heard story about not liking Texans because, “when I worked as a truck driver,  I always got a ticket driving through there.”   We make assumptions about lots of different people groups based on one experience or an encounter with one person that represents that people group in our mind.  

God calls us to offer hospitality to our neighbors.  God calls us to stand firm when people are being mistreated, God calls us to listen to people as individuals not as “one of those people.”  Where do we miss getting to know someone or even being inspired by a someone because of our own labels and assumptions?  I have learned to be a little more open this week because of that experience.  I am grateful that God used my friend CC and a small music video to remind me of a bigger truth about God and the way God calls me to live out God’s love in this world.  

You may not like heavy metal, you may not like this song, but just in case:

In God’s great grace,

Pastor Judy

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