Author: The Rev. Dr. David L. Bridges, Priest
July 22, 2020

I remember seeing a poster many years ago that said, “I learned everything I needed to know in life in Kindergarten”, then went on to list the most important life lessons: 1. Be Nice   2. Eat your vegetables   3. Wash Your Hands   4. Take a Nap Every Day (My favorite)   5. Say “Please” and “Thank You”   6. Mind Your Own Business, etc.

Everything listed on that poster was intended to remind us of the basic needs of a healthy individual, family, community, nation and world. Our mainstream society has given-up on most of these principles, especially the ones concerning being nice or polite.

Tensions are high all over the Country and the world. Daily we are dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic, racial and civil tensions, abuses of power, and widening distrust and hatred, in a Nation facing the realities and myths of its own history.

Our, so-called, “Christian” society is deeply divided along theological and political lines. Radical groups hiding behind religious freedoms continue to terrorize others not like them. The name of Jesus Christ and the entire concept of God is often distorted to support radical religious teachings that divide and kill people.

A lot of church-folk need to learn from the Kindergarten poster; “Be Nice”. Have you noticed the more “religious” people get, the more violent they can become? When someone, or group, decides they are “called” or “ordained” by God to go out against someone or something, they will often stop at nothing to enforce their will and “mission”.

In Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, he offers what I think amounts to a formula for the success of a society. “Treat one another charitably, in complete selflessness, gentleness and patience.” (Ephesians 4:2, TIB)

If we all practiced that advice, we would be at peace with one another and could find contentment for our souls. We would give-up all signs of division, hatred, distrust, racism, greed, selfishness, and all destructive habits and attitudes. FAT CHANCE!

There is no way humans could do that or we would have done it. There is no way, without the help of our Creator, that we could ever fix all of our problems. What do we do best? We humiliate and kill each other quite effectively.

Humans have devised untold means of hurting and killing other humans. We not only devise and build dreadful weapons of pain and destruction, we also devise ways of killing the human spirit; the soul of who we are intended to be.

Maybe Kindergarten teachers should be among our leaders. We could open meetings with an Invocation and a Kindergarten moment! … Cool!

Blessings and Peace to You All,
Fr. David+


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