Obstinate

EmPulse for Week of January 11, 2010


Definition: adj. Sticking to an opinion, purpose, or course of action in spite of reason, arguments, or persuasion. [http://www.merriam-webster.com/thesaurus/OBSTINATE ]

People get stubborn about the dumbest things. That head of lettuce, a parking space, the remote-control, how to turn right, teenage hair color, the order of the Apocalypse, being right about the smallest differences, or, just being right…, all the time. We bicker over the placement of a paper-clip dispenser on a workmate’s desk, the precision of words in a vision statement (adding months of verbiage & discussion instead of action), the reordering of the products in Walmart (after you finally figured out where everything is), and, forgive me, the direction of the spin of the toilet paper roll. Toothpaste tubes are a whole other story!

When will we learn that some things just aren’t worth fighting for or about!?! Here are some things worth fighting for—

  1. Getting a grasp on our personal values and determining the extent that they affect our daily lives and actions.
  2. Finding every person you meet as valuable as yourself and not demeaning them simply because they are different in race, religion, or body type.
  3. Accepting the reality that people, basically, are not naturally seeking to make this world a better place; they are seeking to make it a better place for themselves. Then graciously drawing them to change their minds.
  4. Being the first to seek reconciliation and restitution in times of stress or distance between friends, family, or even nations. Obstinate positioning only leads to bloodshed, be it literal or figurative. Everybody loses.
  5. Believing in God doesn’t make anyone His judge on earth. If you want to do His work on this planet, try working for justice, seeking peace between warring parties, bringing compassion into the middle of hatred or hunger, or providing a vibrant meal for those who despise you. Offer practical care for people who are in obvious need.
  6. Be insistent about teaching ethics in our classrooms. Not just one belief system of ethical behavior, but multiple perspectives. Discuss them openly, without fear of condemnation. Truth holds her own authenticity.
  7. Be willing to call evil, EVIL. Don’t bother with wrangling over its definition; evil also conveys its own authenticity. Name it for what it is. E-v-i-l.  It is as much a spiritual entity as it is a natural one.

If it is in our nature to be obstinate, adamant, dogged, hardheaded, hardhearted, headstrong, immovable, implacable, inflexible, mulish, obdurate, opinionated, pigheaded, stubborn, unbending, unrelenting, unyielding, or just plain willful, then let’s be so about things that matter and leave the toilet paper rolls and toothpaste tubes to the idiots of this world.

Have a nice week.

Gary

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