PRACTICING COURAGE IN THE WILDERNESS
Based on Living Compass “Practicing Courage with all your heart, soul, strength and mind”
“Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being?”
from the Book of Common Prayer
Marketing experts tell us that buyers make their decisions about whether they prefer a particular brand or product in less than two seconds, and that their decision-making process is almost entirely unconscious. They make their decision based primarily on appearance, including color, size, and shape. Whether or not this is true about marketing, it is unfortunately all too true in our day-to-day interactions with one another. We unconsciously pre-judge others based on their appearance, often related to their color, size, and shape, among other factors.
As humans we have a bias and/or prejudice about race, class, gender, and sexual orientation that has been taught, sometimes from our earliest days. Tribal thinking, which almost always includes strong prejudices about the “others” who are not a part of one’s tribe, is strong in our modern culture. As people of faith, we are called to reject all forms of prejudice, and to “strive for justice and peace among all people, respecting the dignity of every human being” It takes courage to let go of our prejudices and engage in this counter-cultural way of accepting and loving others as Jesus taught.
Are you aware of any prejudices that you used to have that you have been able to overcome? Looking at your life today, are there people you find particularly challenging to treat with dignity and to see as beloved children of God, just like you? Why is this?