The year 2020 will go down in history as one of the most controversial periods in modern times. Quite possibly since the beginning of time. We have experienced a pandemic, protesting, riots, racism, and one of the nastiest elections known to man. People have lost friends to differing opinions on some of these topics. I have lost friends over differing opinions on some of these topics. It wasn’t really my call. Then again, I didn’t do much to hold on to those lost friendships. I’m too old to fight. Sometimes it is easier to just walk away and say, “Bye.”
The events of 2020 have had one or two positive effects in our lives. One of the most noticeable to me is the increased ministries which have evolved on Facebook. Churches are still holding services on Facebook. Several pastors have taken to leading a prayer service during the week to bind us over until Sunday. And every now and then, an individual will post something which strikes a chord with my heart. Such was the case a few days ago. As of today, I have 1,338 Facebook friends. It was once over 2,000. I thinned it out not long ago. I still don’t personally know many of them.
I am Facebook friends with a lady named Robyn West. She and I have over 200 common friends online. You would think we know each other. Maybe we have met. If we have, I can’t remember it. This says nothing about her. I can’t remember what I had for lunch. She recently posted a video on Facebook talking about the 10 life lessons she learned before turning 50. Normally, I scroll on past these type things. Much like some folks scroll on past my column. For several reasons, I needed to hear something positive. So, I clicked play.
As Mrs. West went through her list of lessons, there was one thing which became apparent relatively quick. She is a Godly woman. Though she didn’t frame her remarks as biblical, if the reader knows Christ, it was easy to see Him shining through in her smile and her words. Her 10 lessons came straight from the Bible. At the same time, they were a result of her experiences. The experiences of a Godly woman. And I know something about Godly women. Besides the ones I’m related too, I have spent the last two years with one of the Godliest women I have ever known. While Vicki and I had dinner one night this week, we discussed the post by Mrs. West. Her words have spurred me to share some things I have learned in 2020.
Living with a pandemic has been eye-opening. It is difficult. But we as a society are adapting. Until there is a solution to this problem, that is all we can do. There were some, many, which were ignorant enough to believe the virus would disappear immediately after the presidential election. I honestly don’t know how anyone who believed that can make it through a day without significant help. It is my hope and prayer we will all one day have the vaccine to assist in fighting off this deadly illness. I have also learned it is okay to protest over anything we feel is offensive. Social distancing rules do not apply to protests. So even if we aren’t hard core on either side of an argument, protesting is a great way to safely gather with friends. If protesting doesn’t give us the fix we are looking for, we can always ratchet it up to rioting and looting. If 2020 has shown us anything it is this. Throwing things at police officers, burning down businesses, and looting from stores is perfectly acceptable if it helps us express our displeasure with societal issues. I’m curious as to why looting isn’t just called stealing. Another time. In other words, it’s okay to be a criminal if it helps our sensitivities. Laws don’t apply. Racism has also been at the core of virtually every problem we hear or read about. Though I am no expert on this subject or any other, I do know this. If time lasts, there are going to be white people who don’t like black people and vice versa. Regardless of your color, you are either kind or you’re not. Your color cannot help you either way. I’ll finish with the election. If anyone thinks one single national or state politician gives two cents about the day-to-day problems you and I face, I will sell you some ocean front property in Waleska real cheap.
As we ring in 2021, things are not going to change on a dime. There will still be a pandemic, protests, riots, racism, and dirty politics. If things change, it will only be because we open our hearts to the voice of God. It will be because of the prayers of the Godly women in our community, like Mrs. West and the one in my life. It will be because His children reprioritize their lives. It starts with each of us. I sincerely wish every one of you wealth, health, and happiness in 2021. Happy New Year my friends!