Tuesday, January 17, 2017


There are many things to think about.  Many decades ago, a man I admired very much came to a Church meeting and gave a talk.  During the talk he told us young boys that the use of foul language was not a good thing and that we should avoid the use of this kind of language. And I had put that man on a pedestal. He didn't ask to be put there. He had no intention of being put there. I put him there in my mind.    
Fast forward a few short years and I had occasion to go to work for this man.  One day I came around a corner and he was in a discussion with his superintendent for the job we were working on, and the language he was using was the same kind of language he had encouraged me and my friends that we should not use.  His pedestal crumbled that day.  A pedestal that he did not even know he was on.  
While I have elevated others to a higher esteem in my eyes over the years, I have been very careful not to elevate them to a pedestal.  It is very discouraging to discover that those we thought were above some things were actually human and just flesh and blood after all.
I write this after reading on face book today the comments of a friend of ours that had put Martin Luther King, Jr. up on a pedestal of sorts.  The to learn that MLK was actually human and subject to the weaknesses of the flesh after all. That he was a womanizer and that he was actually with a women other than his wife the night he was shot and killed.  This is history and something I have been aware of for decades.  My face book friend, however, was floored upon learning this information. So, on that note I want to mention a couple of things.
1. John F. Kennedy was a womanizer also. This was not as well reported as things are now, but that is a fact. That does not negate the many things he did for this country and his service to the country.  MLK was who he was.  this also does not negate what he did for the betterment of people of color and the helping to get them into a more racial equality.  
2. When we look at those who guide us and lead us, we need to look at where they are going and how they intend to get us there. We need to look at their strengths and realize that no matter how strong they seem to be, they can be a pillar of strength without being on a pedestal. 
And while a pillar can rest upon a pedestal, we need to be careful not to put a pillar in a pedestal that they do not want nor expect.  A pillar may stand the test of time, while a pedestal will probably crumble.

1 comment:

  1. I've been thinking about this a lot as I watch friends struggle with their testimony over things in the church's history that are less than savory. I don't know why or how our home was so open to ALL the history - warts and all, but I'm grateful for it.


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