I saw a license plate while I was driving around Denver yesterday. It was one of those vanity license plates, which are always fun to try to figure out. This one’s message was all about ripping on a popular baseball pitcher. There was no mistaking the message; the owner of those plates hated a particular baseball pitcher.
I began to think a little more about it. Who would use a very visible part of their everyday life as a mini-billboard to broadcast their hatred for somebody? Who would hate someone so openly? And then I started thinking some more.
How many times have I gotten upset at someone and spent the next half hour, hour, maybe even the rest of the day thinking about how horrible that person is? If the world could just hear about how horrible that person is then I’ll feel vindicated. We all do it.
People spread hate in lots of places. Blogs. Facebook. Church “prayer groups” and “Bible studies”. Emails. Text messages. Sermons. Conversations. Even in prayer, thinking that bad-mouthing them to God will somehow alert Him of who “those people” really are at their core. Newsflash: He already knows about them and guess what? He still loves them, no matter what you might want to think or say about them.
Hatred seems to have a wide playing field that we’ve allowed it to have. We were never meant to be wrapped up in hate. Yes, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you (Matt. 5:43-45). But don’t make yourself a slave to hatred and spite. It’s exactly what Satan wants you to do.