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From Your Pastors Heart

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From Your Pastors Heart

There was an ESPN personality in the news this week. It wasn’t for an interview or because of a unique sports opinion. No, Britt McHenry, a 28 year old roving reporter for ESPN, lost it, blew her top, verbally assaulting the desk worker at an automobile tow yard. It seems that Ms. McHenry left her car unattended in the private parking lot of a Chinese restaurant. The tow company had the right and authority to remove the car from the parking lot. Returning to find her car towed, Ms. McHenry, flew into a rage and let the attendant have it. Standing beneath a camera, Ms. McHenry began to berate the woman. In case you missed it, here are some excerpts from her temper tantrum:

“I’m in the news, sweetheart. I will … sue this place.”

“That’s why I have a degree and you don’t.”

“Do you feel good about your job? So I could be a college dropout and do the same thing?”

“Maybe if I was missing some teeth they would hire me, huh? Oh like (your teeth)? They look so stunning. I’m on television and you’re in a … trailer, honey. Lose some weight, baby girl.”

Let’s look closely at what Ms. McHenry was really saying: I am famous that makes me better than you; I am more educated than you and that makes me better than you; I have better teeth than you and that makes me… You get the idea, right? This is most reprehensible. These small minded, childish, careless, words indicate a heart that has not felt the radical touch of the gospel. Ms. McHenry’s apology, via twitter, was equally mind boggling: “In an intense and stressful moment, I allowed my emotions to get the best of me and said some insulting and regrettable things,” An “intense and stressful” moment? She had her car towed after a night of dining out and clubbing around Washington DC. Are you kidding me? Compare the intensity of a night out on the town, even with a disappointing ending, to the Christians in the Middle East and northern Africa seeing their brothers and sisters die proclaiming Christ and rejecting Allah. Compare the stress of having your car towed to the parents of the 270+ girls kidnapped by Boko Haram over a year ago! We have lost our perspective, Britt McHenry is just an example of the inverted nature of our over sensitive, self-centered culture.

The Gospel takes care of that. In the Gospel we have the constant reminder that there is nothing that can rob us (even the intense and stressful moment when your car is towed) of our joy held imperishable in Christ (1 Peter1:4). The Gospel creates awareness that we (the human race) are all alike in our lostness and were it not for God’s grace we would all be destined for hell. The Gospel is what Ms. McHenry needs today (even if she is a believer). She needs to be humbled through a (re)introduction to the unmerited favor of God. We all need to stand in His grace and realize that none of us deserves to be there. The Gospel helps keep our mouths shut, and when they open, our words gracious. The Gospel weaves throughout our lives opening our hands and hearts to be reconcilers, lovers, and givers of grace not childish fit throwers, spewing our entitled venom on everyone that we presume to be “better” than. Let’s do “better” than Ms. McHenry, not just in the absence of such unkind words, but in grace filled conversations with everyone we encounter, even and especially in an “intense and stressful moment.”