The Jerks

I’m really tired of you……you joy stealers. Especially you who try to manipulate those I care about and make them feel less. Especially those of you who were sent by God to be their family, but also those who have pretended to be their friends. To put it simply, you’re jerks.

Yep, I understand that you are people to be pitied, though you would say that is not what you are after. You live life….sadly. Your purpose is wrong. You are making the world so much worse instead of so much better. And why? For many of you it’s a hellfire determination to manipulate and a lack of ability to live your own identity.

You look at the world with very dark glasses. You see darkness everywhere. You often don’t see that you are the one creating much of that darkness.

How do you know if this is you? Let me try to start a checklist. You may be a jerk if….

  • You were to weigh your conversation during a given day, and much of what comes out of your life is negative talk about others. Or the world in general.
  • You think everyone should think like you. Your experience, your knowledge, trumps that of others and makes you feel superior.
  • You act as though you have been given the role of the Holy Spirit in other’s people lives. You spend a lot of time trying to show them how wrong they are. (Note: God felt only one Holy Spirit was necessary. If you’re walking around a mere mortal on the outside of people, you’re not it.)
  • A lot of your time is spent worrying about the choices of other people….who they marry, how they spend their money and time, the dumb things they did in the past or do now, the friends with whom they associate. There are natural consequences to those things…..they don’t need you to fix them.
  • You feel acute embarrassment for the actions of others. Nope….it’s not yours to indulge in. Not if you birthed them, taught them, married them, introduced them, or told them. Yep….we all may cringe occasionally about the behavior of “our people”. If it lasts more than a moment, you’re probably going too far. You’re not them.
  • You bring up the same subject of contention each and every time you are around them. (They heard you the first time. Now you are Charlie Brown’s teacher.)
  • You don’t appreciate the good things about people. If you say you love them but can’t seem to come up with anything good about them? You don’t.
  • You’re passive aggressive with the people in your life. They “should” know what hurt you, bothered you, concerned you. You shouldn’t need to tell them. Or you have told them, sort of. Kind of. Well… shouldn’t need to tell them. Or it’s not worth the hassle. Yet you think of nothing else when you see them…and it’s obvious an elephant is in the room. But since you don’t point it out, they just feel something’s off. And that something is you.
  • You abdicate your responsibility to parent. Or care for your own parents who raised you with love.
  • You allow others to make your choices for you…and you blame them if you are confronted. They don’t like someone, so you don’t, They don’t agree with their lifestyle, so you don’t. They hate someone, so you do. They think you should make a certain choice, so you do. No grown up should ever blame others for how they treat people. It’s all on you. Even if it was their idea.
  • You judge others based on factors out of their control…or even those in their control that may be the result of a different life experience than yours. Their skin color. Their hair color. Their gender. Their family. Their sexuality. Their handicaps. Their political party. Their income. Their charitable contributions. Their religion, culture, or lack thereof.
  • You shun people for actual or imagined “sins”. This means you overtly or covertly stay away from them. It may be because they leave your church or their spouse or because their family member is arrested. Is it really the time to stay away?
  • You make negative comments about children. Or their parents. In front of them. Even if you spin it well and no one else appears to notice.
  • What you say you believe is not evident in how you live your life. You say you serve love, but spew hate.

You are the hateful ones. Your superpower is to make people cry and doubt they are a masterpiece of the creator. You never will change the world for the good….because even if you have a good point, the delivery of your message makes people run in the other direction. Sometimes even when they would agree with that point if you took a softer approach and both spoke and listened and tried to understand them.

Know this….you may think no one knows, but we do. We’re watching. Some of us can even treat you kindly, knowing you are a jerk.

I hope I stepped on some toes. I hope some of you may feel a pang when reading some of these things and take steps to change.

To those who refuse to acknowledge or make an effort to get better? We’ll be there for your victims. And yes….they are victims and you are a perpetrator. We will love them. We will be kind to them. We will gently lead them to work through their problems. We will remind them you are jerks. And while sometimes it seems that you rule the world, you don’t. Love and kindness will win.

And to those who have been the victims, you are not wrong. You don’t deserve what you have been through. Don’t let the jerks keep you down. They’re not worth it. Forgive them. That means release the pain of their transgression. Live your life with joy. That will be your revenge. Even if you’re not the vengeful type.

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