I have found this to be true in ministry and so will you if you are either currently in ministry or plan to be. It was just a couple of years ago while I was speaking at a camp when I bumped into a parent who had quite the family. This dad was really trying to go for a new record in the kid department. We got talking and after a while I brought up the fact that I think it is great when a family can go to Cornerstone. Immediately he began to tell me how horrible it is that we would spend that kind of money to attend a Christian music festival. He continued to tell me that their family cannot afford to do anything because of school supplies, clothes, and they were using government assistance. My initial response I wanted to give was “have another one”, but I refrained. It is amazing at the people who will get upset with you when you say you are going on vacation. In the words of one person that left our church, "only rich people can afford to go on vacation."
It is funny isn’t it how people can be a real kill joy for what excites you? One thing you will figure out quickly about me if you are my friend on Facebook or follow me on Twitter is that I don’t really talk down to anyone’s opinion. Initially you may say, “YEAH RIGHT!” but look at them, usually the threads I start are me stating my opinion and eventually it ends in a rather lengthy discussion. I will weigh in once or twice but that is it. I truly believe your opinion is your opinion. If a person posts what they think……..then so be it.
This kind of thing can come out during holidays. At Christmas time I love to get gifts (who doesn’t) and I love to give them as well. I am like a kid at Christmas and do get excited about it all. Now this is the time of year you will get those who just plain won’t celebrate Christmas because of personal convictions, great! Then there are those who will not celebrate Christmas and try to convince you why you shouldn’t either. Praise the Lord there is nobody in the church I pastor like that or I would go nuts. The other holiday that surprised me this year was Valentine’s Day. As this world continues to progress with social networking at our finger tips you really find the true colors of people. The biggest concern I find on social network sites are people slowly turning the tide to say “you are not entitled to your opinion.” I love the ones that say, “I don’t need a special day to get my special someone a gift”. If this is the case…PLEASE don’t put any Christmas gifts under your tree this year. If you do, you will be contradicting yourself and please don’t celebrate a birthday with gifts either. The fact is, gift giving is one of the 5 love languages and it is almost tied with my top love language. Tracy and I found great strength in that book and so have many that read that. The ones who smash that book honestly are ones who have never read it. I remember talking with a lady in Wisconsin Rapids that read that book and it shook her to her core. This book is not about telling you how marriage should be (those books annoy me). This book shows you how to communicate with the people you love (spouse, kids). At the back of the book it has an assessment no different that a D.I.S.C. assessment or any other personality assessment. Once you find the love language…it opens doors wide for communication. This lady was shaken because she did not know her spouses love language and once she did…it was too late for their marriage that she knew could have been saved if she had read this book earlier. From both guys and girls I am amazed at the amount of people who don't like Valentine's Day. Just a thought...I wonder if these people have really had the all out romantic treatment that Valentine's Day brings on? Or does life, kids, jobs, etc. bog them down so badly they wouldn't know what a romantic time was if it bit them. Perhaps some do, but perhaps some don't.
Your opinion is your opinion and I respect that. It is why I love blogging so much! I think there is nothing wrong with even discussing or joking around with someone else's opinion. The danger is when we become snarky (yes I finally used that word) or even rude in regards to someone else’s opinion. You cannot please everyone but you can certainly make everyone feel entitled to their opinion…this is what we call respect for each other.