This is what the Lord All-Powerful said:
“You must do what is right and fair.
You must be kind and
show mercy to each other.” – Zechariah 7:9
I’m posting a little later this morning. First, life is exceptionally busy around Maul-Hall. Then, I’m thinking it might be smart to let the Internet calm down some after the latest absurdity onslaught from our 2017 version of Hans Christian Anderson’s The Emperor Has No Clothes.
However, instead of going down that rabbit hole, I’ll wrap up our fun few days with the grandchildren with Naomi’s birthday dinner.
Our daughter Naomi has very specific tastes in birthday treats. She asked for her favorite meal from when she was a kid – “Daddy’s spaghetti” – yet re-imagined via all the serious cooking I’ve been doing over the past several years. No problem. I created the amazing meat sauce I discovered in my Italian cookbook (it takes five hours but it’s worth it), made pasta from scratch, then added a wonderful salad.
Then, to make it all even better than good, Rebekah and the children made biscuits.
In fact, it’s this photograph – making the biscuits – that this entire post hangs on. It may be a crazy world out there, there may be serious social unrest, and the level of political cynicism and disarray may well be at an all time high… but, this country is going to rise or fall on the strength of families, gathering together to break bread in our homes, by the thousands, and the hundreds of thousands, and by the millions across all fifty states.
Civilization is built on the idea of decency and civility, and that is something that must – fundamentally – be taught in our homes. Then it must be practiced in all our interactions, demonstrated in the way we live together, modeled in the manner in which we do business, and absolutely expected in our politics too.
So let me ask you, everyone who reads this post – what is your sphere of influence? If it is just your immediate family, then make sure it’s a family that understands and practices the principles of kindness, gentleness, cooperation, encouragement, grace, and mercy. If it’s a circle of friends, then be an evangelist for grace there. If your influence covers a business, or a faith community, or a constituency, then make it your business to teach civility and respect throughout the organization.
We can’t just point our fingers at the television, or the news article, or the Internet, or even the president, and cry foul! We must model, and teach, and train, and make a difference where we can. This is what the Lord All-Powerful said: “You must do what is right and fair. You must be kind and show mercy to each other.”
This is our responsibility as followers of The Way!
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there's always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor's degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men's Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.