Saturday, May 23, 2015

I'm a Hypocrite

There's been a lot of buzz lately in the media over hypocrisy.  There's something about people being in the limelight that makes us need to rip any mistake they make to shreds, especially when it contradicts what that person believes, therefore branding them as a hypocrite.  I guess that's rightfully so!  A hypocrite is someone whose behavior doesn't match their beliefs, and is one of the most universally upsetting types of people out there.  We love pointing out the audacity of others' hypocrisies, knowing we would never be as blatantly self-deceptive as that person.  However, that leads me to a confession I need to make:

I am a hypocrite.
I mean, seriously.  He's beautiful.

But you know what?  So are you.

The wise (and beautiful) Dieter F. Uchtdorf once said, "If you define hypocrite as someone who fails to live up perfectly to what he or she believes, then we are all hypocrites," ("Come, Join With Us" April 2014).  That means that if any of us ever make a mistake ever with anything we think is true, we are hypocrites.

But we don't like being hypocrites.  So what do we do to remedy the situation?  Stop having standards.

That's right.  Give up.  If you have any standards at all, you will break them to some degree at some point.  Even the basics: most people believe it's important to be nice.  How often do we do, say, or think unkind things to or about another person?  You dirty hypocrite.  It's widely accepted that passing judgment on others is wrong.  But how often do we judge the judgers?  Whether or not they're actually judgmental is not really for us to know or, frankly, care about.  I'd venture to say that a good 90% of things we get our panties in a twist over have little bearing on our lives, especially the mistakes of those that are famous.  Are you ever going to meet that person?  Has what they've done actually impacted you or anyone you love?  They might reflect general problems with society, but then again, so do our mistakes.

Most of us have some sort of truths we believe in.  Most of us are trying our best to live up to those things the best that we know how.  Most of us are trying to improve ourselves to the point of living in perfect harmony with our standards.  Until we get there, though, I wonder how much grief would be eliminated from the world if we all paused just a second before lashing out at a hypocrite to think about how hypocritical we are ourselves.  What if we extended hands to our fellow hypocrites to help them live up to their beliefs instead of casting stones to knock them right back down from where they came from?
Be kind.  Ephesians 4:31-32

Personally, I fall short of my standards.  But that means that I have standards to fall short of!  I wish I could say I was perfect, but the fact is (or at least evidence points to) that I'm human.  And so are you.  And I personally think that we should all stop focusing so much on others' mistakes and start focusing on our own.

Let's just all be a little more kind is my prayer in the name of the only perfect Being to ever walk this earth, even Jesus Christ, amen.

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