- When you win a game, gloat.
- When you lose a game, whine & accuse the other player of cheating.
That's it. A steady diet of this behavior will have you on the outs in no time - and if they choose not to kick you out, they'll secretly detest your presence. Trust me on this one.
So, how did this pithy bit of wisdom end up under my "Framing the Conversation" heading? Come on, if you're reading this blog, you have enough sense to come in out of the rain & enough smarts to figure out a metaphor when it bites you on the hind end.
Tonight - or possibly later - a number of candidates & propositions are going to win or lose. Some of you will be victorious in a battles you've fought with your keyboards & your hearts... others of you will know the stale taste of defeat - and you've fought just as hard as those who win.
Regardless (or is that "irregardless"?), you have the opportunity tonight to respond with grace & dignity.
- If your side/candidate wins, don't gloat.
- If your side/candidate loses, don't whine. Don't accuse others of cheating without real & obvious cause... using an actual standard of proof, not "Rush said it" or "it was on Air America."
I want to speak specifically to those who declare themselves as followers of Christ. We have a huge responsibility tonight, esp. in regards to Proposition 8.
If Prop. 8 passes, we have to live out the love for gays & lesbians we've talked about... there is NO ROOM for gloating in the gospel of Jesus Christ. These people are not second-class citizens, to be loved only if they "mend their ways" - they are created in God's image & loved so much by God that He sent Jesus to die for them (and for us!). To do the church-y equivalent of "Hey, Hey, Goodbye" is a sick perversion of the love of Jesus Christ.
If Prop. 8 is defeated, we must still live out the love of Jesus Christ in a political situation that is not friendly to our values. I can not state it emphatically enough - this does NOT justify us behaving in an unfriendly manner to homosexuals or those who support same-sex marriage. If we're gonna call ourselves "biblical Christians", then we better live like it.
Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity. Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone. (Colossians 4:5-6, NIV)
if someone asks about your Christian hope, always be ready to explain it. But do this in a gentle and respectful way. Keep your conscience clear. Then if people speak against you, they will be ashamed when they see what a good life you live because you belong to Christ. (1 Peter 3:15-16, NLT)
The most important thing today is not the election of a particular candidate - no one person will usher in the Kingdom of God. (Well, one will, but He's not running this year.) Nor is it the passing of a proposition - law can compel moral behavior but it has no power over the heart. It is far more important that the world around us see followers of Jesus living in the grace & power of Jesus Christ.
Yep, I started this mini-sermon by telling you how to get kicked out of a game group. That's the way I roll.