The headlines of the news yesterday told of a very sad event: a mentally disabled man was held captive, tortured and beaten by four black people, he was white. The headlines screamed at how it was a "hate crime" and hoped for a bitter but final end for these four perpetrators.
Hate crime. There are "rules" for defining what this is, according to a court of law. But please, any one who would do this to another for any reason...isn't that hate? Hate means taking away the dignity and respect of and towards another by demeaning them, wishing them ill, hurting them and yes, even killing them. I think about this poor disabled man, only eighteen years old and what must have been running through his mind; the confusion, sadness, horror and now, the trauma, his trust shattered. My heart just breaks. In another video, posted on social media yesterday, a group of men, seeing a deer swimming towards them in a shallow pond, swam out to meet it, then dragged it to shore where they stabbed it mercilessly, tried to smother it and when it continued to struggle, stabbed it some more.
What evil runs through people's minds when realizing someone or something is weaker than they are and taking advantage of that? It is hate, pure and simple. Hate of weakness, hate of themselves. Think about it, if you were filled with love, love would want only the best for others, no matter the color, creed, gender, be it person or animal. And the weaker the subject, the greater the love!
Back when I was young, Andy Williams sang a beautiful ballad about Jesus, of how some see Him white, others see Him in a different color. Regardless of how He is seen, He is the One and same:
click here to listen
Jesus felt the same way. The Gospel is full of His examples of love: towards women, children, Samaritans, tax collectors, prostitutes, He reserved judgment for none. He sought out the weak, the ill, the infirm. Though He was God, He was also man, because he wept when his friends died, and rejoiced when His miracles allowed them to be reborn.
In today's world, it seems that those who terrorize others, either as part of a group, or else solo, have taken the world by the storm. But Love trumps evil. It always has. Jesus won for us salvation. Love wins. You can be the one who spreads love and joy to others. If you see a need, fill it. Fill the world with love by your acts of goodness, kindness and mercy. You may just be one person, but to one person, you may be the whole world. Don't ever forget that!