The word “offend” is quite interesting. It means “to stumble.”
I guess it happens everywhere, but since I am involved in ministry, I see it here quite often.
People get offended.
This is one of those times of year that people really get their “I’m going to be offended” on! People are wearing their “Easily Offended” tee-shirts proudly.
In fact, just giving this season a name, will offend some.
If I say this is the “Christmas” season, some will be offended. So I say it’s the “holiday” season, and I offend even more. If I decide to call it the “Hanukkah” season, multitudes will get offended.
So I guess I’m left with calling this season “December.” Pleeeeease don’t take December from me!
It’s absolutely amazing to me what will cause some people to “stumble” in their journey. If you can get thrown “off track” by someone at Walmart saying “Happy Holidays,” you are running a very small race. Personally, I don’t care what benediction they close the transaction with so long as these three things happen: 1. I get home with all my purchases. 2. I get my correct change back. 3. I don’t get overcharged. In fact, if those three things happen, I wouldn’t be offended by a “Happy Kwanzaa!”
Every year, our church puts up a Nativity scene and a “December” tree. I hope that doesn’t offend you. If it does, too bad. First Non-Offensive Assembly is a few streets over. Our church is about loving people and lifting them to a higher level. If our “December” tree offends you, that is awesome. The “December” tree is actually a mirror: it shows you the work that needs to be done in your heart.
Our pastor likes to offend people on purpose. Once you stumble, you are in a great position to be lifted!
What should offend people when they go to church is empty seats. When you see an empty seat, you should be so “Jack Frosted up” over it, you spend the week making sure the house is packed next Sunday.
Being offended is a choice. If you haven’t figured it out yet, the world is not a safe place. There’s all kinds of things in the journey that can make us stumble. You can either let the “hurdle,” knock you down. You can go around it. You can go over it. Or, you can waste a lifetime crying about it and calling attention to it.
You can also be a trailblazer. You can be the person who makes roads for other people to travel. You can live such a great life that people want to go down “Your Lane.”
In closing, in love, and in the spirit of “December” I say, if the jingling of my bells bothers you, Fa la la la la la… la la la la… to you!
Oh… one of my favorite verses is Psalm 119:165. You just have to read it in my version of choice, the old King James Version. “Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.”
Happy December and to all a good night!
Happy Days! (Oooops… I just offended the anti-television crowd!)