Thought For The Day 08/21/13

Standard

Intolerance

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Hate

This was found on Facebook page of a friend, Tuesday, 08/20/13

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Intolerance is the most socially acceptable form of egotism, for it permits us to assume superiority without personal boasting.

Sydney J. Harris 

http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/keywords/intolerance.html

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in·tol·er·ance

  [in-tol-er-uhns]  

noun
1. lack of toleration; unwillingness or refusal to tolerate or respect contrary opinions or beliefs, persons of different races or backgrounds, etc.
2. incapacity or indisposition to bear or endure: intolerance to heat.
3. abnormal sensitivity or allergy to a food, drug, etc.
4. an intolerant act.

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The letter in the picture above is true. However, the names were not changed to protect the innocent. There was no need because the person who wrote it is far from innocent nor did she bother to identify herself by name. But I doubt any of you are particularly surprised at this revelation anyway. After all, isn’t this typical? So many of those in this world who spew hatred and intolerance from the roof tops fail to take ownership of or to accept responsibility for having said such things, by identifying themselves! I suspect this is the same reason that criminals mask themselves during the commission of their illegal activity. After all, they know what they are doing is wrong, so they cloak themselves believing they will be insulated and protected in their anonymity. What other reason could there possibly be?

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Intolerance to others, whether it is intolerance of another’s faith, color, gender, sexual orientation or any of the myriad of things we find to dislike about someone else, seems to be perhaps the greatest sin committed by human beings these days! However, I have discovered something rather surprising about the relationship between intolerance and faith. As I was exploring Biblical references to intolerance, I was unable to find any reference where intolerance is actually deemed to be a sin. And while there are many things that are condemned as being sins, such as murder, lies, adultery, slander and the rest of those absolutes established by God when He gave His laws to man, intolerance isn’t included. So when we sit in judgement of another, we are merely reinforcing that which God has already determined to be appropriate actions and behavior for a being who is inherently sinful. Our sinfulness……the scarlet letter we have all been made to wear, the moment a bite of the forbidden fruit was taken.

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Now my take on faith tells me that whether or not I like the actions of another, because I am a sinner myself, it is not my place to cast the first stone. However, it is awfully easy to want to do that when one of God’s most precious and innocent gifts to man, our children, is being attacked. But because I know that Christ came to pave the way for my salvation, I can try to be tolerant even when others are not, and even if I question whether another deserves it.

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Whether another I encounter is intolerant and hateful and cruel, it is not my place to judge. It is merely my charge to offer insight into what I believe should be our collective moral compass for behavior. God asks that I find it within to separate the sin from the sinner, and while I can hate the sin, I should never hate the sinner. And no, that does not mean that I approve of either the sin or the sinner, but it does mean that I live my life according to what I know is His will for me, and that I share His will, by extension, with others, through my own example. This is something the Bible teaches us to do, as well, in Titus 2:7-8 ESV, “In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.” 

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“My brethren, have not the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory, with respect of persons. For if there come unto your assembly a man with a gold ring, in goodly apparel, and there come in also a poor man in vile raiment; And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good place; and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit here under my footstool: Are ye not then partial in yourselves, and are become evil thinking judges?”

James 2:1-4 KJV

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Copyright © 2011-2013 “MandysPath” Ministry

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About Mandy Bruscella

Mandy's Story: As a Registered Professional Nurse with Certification in a number of specialties including home care, I was afforded the opportunity of working closely with various Social Service Agencies in NY and NJ. ~ A lifelong Christian, I was ordained as a Presbyterian deacon in 1993 and, after relocating to SC in 2000, elected to become ordained as a non-denominational minister. ~ I established "MandysPath" Ministry in 2011. "MandysPath" Ministry is a member of Pacific Life Church, El Sobrante, CA, network of ministries. ~ I direct an outreach ministry in an alternative setting, providing spiritual care to a congregation of more than 500 people from around the world via the Internet. ~ As part of this outreach, I write a daily faith based blog. In March, 2012 I was asked to become a board member of Heroes For Children which is a non-profit foundation, established to assists the Guardian ad Litem program of Horry County, SC. Guardians ad Litem are a group of court appointed advocates who represent the best interests of children in Family Court proceedings involving allegations of abuse or neglect. Working closely with these men and women who make a difference in the lives of children, I completed training and have been sworn in to serve as a Guardian ad Litem for the state of South Carolina . ~ I have been married since 1975 to a wonderful man, Daniel. I have a son Daniel and his wife Melissa who live in NYC. My daughter Sabrina and my grandson Landon live here in SC. ~ My father Harold continues to share his wisdom with me and is responsible for many of the ideas I write about!

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