Winston Pearce, great preacher of yesterday used to tell a funny story. Seems like a man that was running for Congress came to town and was speaking at the County Courthouse. Two old farmers decided to go and see what was happening. Quite a crowd had gathered when they got there. Lot of noise, lot of yelling, a lot of people screaming to the top of their lungs. One farmer turned to the other and said, “Well, what do you think?” His buddy said, “I didn’t come here to think—I come here to holler.”
This current carefully organized effort to gather a crowd and shout down whatever governmental official is trying to explain health care or whatever is scary. These folk do not listen to reason—they only want to holler. I can understand some of this hollering. Some don’t have jobs. Some have families that are falling apart. Many have children that cannot afford to pay their bills. Some have lost a son or daughter in Iraq. And many are just plain scared of the future. Others just do not want to face the facts about anything.
Shouting and disruption solves nothing. It will not help us one whit. Serving as Interim Pastor one of the first things I have always had to do was to try to turn the temperature down. Anxiety levels were often going off the charts. You can’t make wise decisions that way. One of the many things I like about our President is that he is trying desperately to turn down the temperature. Our anxiety level in this country is much too high.
I hope this movement to yell and shout down anybody you disagree with backfires. Most folk do not like yelling or confusion. We need to find out the facts about this health care situation. We need to begin to listen to one another. The yellers are important but we can’t hear their concerns until they stop screaming. Yelling does nothing but create confusion and rage. They may not want to think…but they sure don’t need to holler. Anything we can all do to turn down the temperature might just help the whole community. Reckon this is one of the tasks of the church in our time?