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home : opinion : opinion August 14, 2020

6/8/2020 2:33:00 PM
The Pecking Order

Lacey Leonhardt
Lincoln Herald Columnist

If you know me, then you know I have an immense amount of love for animals. Which is exactly why our small hobby farm continues to grow with chickens, goats and who knows what is next. And early spring we decided to get more baby chickens to add to our current flock. I am a firm believer that every child should experience the beauty in raising something and watching it grow. To learn to care for something, love it unconditionally, and feel a sense of pride once it is grown. Those are life lessons that I learned at a young age that I carry with me today and always will. But there is still some pain in all the beauty of raising something, especially when introducing new chicks to an existing flock. For better words- “the pecking order.” (And no, this article is not all about chickens, I’m getting somewhere I promise- just stay with me.)

For me, I have a big heart when it comes to animals, and I can’t stand to see them bullied or in this case “pecked” by another animal. And as I watched the little ones helplessly run and hopelessly try to defend themselves, my heart ached for these sweet babes. I watched the flock split into two separate groups- the adults vs. the young. Completely separated and continuously “pecking” at each other. And today, it hit me- with our worlds issue of discrimination, we are exactly like the chickens. In our very own way, we are divided and consistently pecking at one another.

In the past few weeks I have read and watched so many opinions and views on the topic of racism and discrimination. I have seen pastors comes together on the subject. Families starting to have the discussion within their homes. Businesses making a point to stand for what they believe and making donations. And let me say that my point in this article is not to persuade you one way or another. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, regardless if we believe it is right or wrong. My point in this, is how we react to it.

In the many posts on social media, you can almost bet that in a comment thread, there will be someone who will disagree in the most disrespectful way. Violence breaking out amongst towns and cities. Friends turning against each other. Strangers arguing with one another, with no history or understanding of each other’s past and tribulations. We are literally “pecking” one another.

I am not saying do not stand for what you believe in. If you feel posting about it and voicing your beliefs is what you need to do- go ahead. If you feel standing in the middle of a small town with a sign is what you need to do- go ahead. Do what you believe. But do it with kindness, respect, and most importantly- love. And when someone disagrees with you, show that same amount of kindness, respect and love back- even if you disagree or feel they are underserving. Because to be honest, God probably thinks the same about you at times, but yet he loves you, respects you and continues to be kind to you every day. I will not say that we do or do not have a discrimination problem in this world- but we most certainly have a heart problem. Hate is what got us into this situation in the first place. Love will be the only thing that saves us. In a recent sermon from Bishop T. D. Jakes he said something that really opened my eyes, “we are attacking the person, when we should be attacking the issue.”

I also want to point out that teaching values such as respect and love, start in our own home. Raising your children to understand that they are nor better or above another human being is one of the most beneficial things you can instill in them early on. Because the truth is, we are not just discriminating against race, but even financial status, sexual preference, stereotypes; anything that tends to differ from us, we automatically develop a negative opinion about it. As I read many of the comments and posts, I realized that the reason we are in this situation is because of the upbringing of those before us. The chain was never broken or changed, it remained the same throughout generations. The bible tells us in Proverbs 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” If we want to live in a judgmental free world, we have to raise judgmental free children.

Lastly, I want to remind you that even during these scary and difficult times, God is still good. He is still in the business of performing miracles. He is still not only listening to our prayers, but answering them. Many will look at our country and think that it is far beyond helping. That we have made no progress or growth. But the same God that created this world, is still the keeper of it. He is a God that shows mercy. A God that forgives, and a God that longs for his people to do the same. He is still working, still watching and still blessing.

“The darkness fears your voice, that drove it back before. And though the night is long, I know your light will drive it back once more.”- Elevation Worship

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