I was perusing a editorial by Scott Brown and liked what he had to say. Thought you would too.
A recent ABC news ’20/20′ survey suggested that rudeness is on the rise in America. Have you noticed lately? It seems that our society has forgotten about basic manners and general acts of kindness. According to the report, the most cited transgression is annoying and loud cell phone conversations in public places. Others that ranked high were being disrespectful, profanity, crude language and allowing cell phones and email to interrupt conversations.
It would do us well to remember what the apostle Paul had to say in the ‘Love’ chapter.
"Love…does not behave rudely." I Corinthians 13:4-5a
The love addressed here is the ‘agape’ love that is the love we receive from God himself. Our love is fashioned around how we are treated by one another. God’s love is more concerned about us than himself. So it was no surprise that Jesus would ask us to do to others as we would like to have done to ourselves. When we treat others rudely, we are wounding ourselves.
Mom would always say to ignore rude people because they wouldn’t care about what you had to say. All you would get is more rudeness. In fact, she told us as kids to pity them because all they would attract was other people like themselves.
Then I began to wonder. Am I rude and don’t realize it? I began with those closest to me and found the answer was ‘yes’. I don’t always listen to Marcia. I take it for granted what she will do. I catch myself telling Megan what she should be doing instead of treating her like an adult. I told myself it was because I am so busy but that would be an excuse. I expect them to stop and take the time when I am talking to them.
Rudeness is not controlled by trying to stop it. Rudeness is addressed by countering it with politeness and courtesy. In fact, the same strategy works for dealing with people who are rude. While it may not matter to them that we are kind when they are rude, it affects me and those around me. People will remember your polite response longer than their crude remark. There is power in that fact!
So watch for rudeness in yourself and those around you. Don’t return rudeness for rudeness but reply with love. Watch the difference it will make.
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