On favoritism

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May 20, 2019

In this morning’s Fruit of the Vine, Gar Mickelson reflects on a community meeting he was facilitating “on the topic of local homelessness.... The small venue was packed, and seating was first come, first served. Because my target audience was the ‘important’ people in the room, the thought flashed through my mind to ask the group of homeless people to move to the back in order to make room for my more distinguished guests.”

Gar didn’t act on that thought, but he did take time later to reflect on where it had come from – to question himself: “I had desired to show deference to those whom I felt could give me what I wanted.... I realized that even though I sincerely love the poor and desire to champion their causes, I was willing to show favoritism to those with title and status if it meant I could get what I wanted from them.”

Gar points us to a passage from the second chapter of James:

My brothers and sisters, believers in our glorious Lord Jesus Christ must not show favoritism. 2 Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in filthy old clothes also comes in. 3 If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, “Here’s a good seat for you,” but say to the poor man, “You stand there” or “Sit on the floor by my feet,” 4 have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts?

And Gar offers this prayer: “Please help me to be diligently aware of any favoritism in my thinking, then help me eradicate those thoughts and actions.”

I’m praying for you this week,
Eric Muhr


211 N. Meridian St. #101
Newberg, OR 97132

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