Tolerance. Lack of conviction. Trying to please everyone. We all know people like this. They don’t want to step on anyone’s toes, so they refuse to state their opinion and seemingly never stand up for anything.
Our country has become a place of tolerance. When many people first came to America it was to escape religious persecution. They were looking for a place that would allow them to practice their religion in peace. They wanted freedom.
But I would suggest to you that our country is less about freedom and more about tolerance in many ways. And I would also suggest that this will hurt our country far more than it will help it.
It is one thing to tolerate someone’s opinion on something such as which ice cream flavor is better. In the long run, does it really matter if mint chocolate chip is better or if cookie dough is? The simple answer is no. People are entitled to have their opinions and when we disagree with them, sometimes tolerance is an acceptable answer.
But when it comes to things of a moral nature, tolerance is not the answer. As we approach the 42nd year since abortion was made legal in our country, I think it is necessary to ask ourselves what we have done about this fact. Are we still righteously angry about this problem? Have we taken any steps to try to overturn this decision? Have we contacted our representatives and senators about how we feel? Have we prayed outside of abortion clinics? Have we supported our local crisis pregnancy centers?
Or have we let ourselves become complacent? Have we fallen into a mindset of “it’s their choice, not mine,” or “it’s not my body,” or “as long as it doesn’t affect me, I don’t care what they do.” Have we lost our convictions? These statements (and others like them) are a form of tolerance. G.K. Chesterton said it so well when he said the following statement:
I think most of us would be offended if someone told us that they thought we lacked conviction. Most of us have convictions about something, whether it’s about something moral or something as simple as which type of car is safer to drive.
But do our actions and words reflect our convictions? Are we willing to stand up for what we believe in or will we simply tolerate the things we do not? I would suggest to you that the more we tolerate things and the less we stand for, the more our country (and our world) will deteriorate into a society where people are “free” to do whatever they want, without regard to anyone else. Alexander Hamilton said it well when he said the following:
Take a look at your life, your beliefs and convictions. Think about how you may have become complacent or tolerant to things and try to find a way to become more convicted and stand up for what you believe in.