Tuesday, March 24, 2009


In church this Sunday, a woman got up and "taught" on Proverbs 14:30. Now, those who know me know already that I have an issue with this, but that is neither my primary complaint nor the reason I decided to put "taught" between quotation marks. What I have an issue with is, in fact, not even primarily a doctrinal issue (for once). It was the sheer incompetence of a woman who showed no depth of understanding of those things about which she presumed to tell others.

The text of Proverbs 14:30, as she used it, is:
A sound heart is the life of the flesh: but envy the rottenness of the bones.
(This was from the King James Version.)

Now, first of all, she did a horrible job of talking about this verse, because she was constantly repeating herself and falling back on saying "hallelujah" at what seemed to be the points where she either lost her place or couldn't think of what to say next. It is certainly a good thing to praise God, but it felt more like she was using "hallelujah" as a place-holder than an expression of worship. But even beyond this, was when she brought up bullies.

I was bullied as a child. It has left me with a profound disgust for bullies. If I call someone a bully, I do not mean they are being less than kind, I mean I want them to die a slow, painful death, in the most humiliating manner possible, in front of everyone they hold dear. It is not a minor issue for me. And, like every child, I heard the simplistic response that "they're just jealous." And like every child who was bullied, and like most bullies, I realized the lie of this statement. The speaker made this very claim when talking about the pitfalls of envy, and even related her own experience of being picked on as a child, but admitted she didn't know what the bully in question was jealous of. Let me fill this in for you: not all bullies are jealous!

True, I had some kids pick on me for what may have been jealousy. But more often than not, it was a way to assert their dominance without any personal risk. By showing that they could put down someone, they were given popularity and with it, power. Very rarely did I offer anything of which they could be jealous. Some of them even got better grades than me. And I certainly didn't have more friends. Or try to take away their friends. I shrank! So you want to tell me that all bullies are jealous, you'd better have some really good proof. Don't simplify something that tortured someone for over a decade to one potential cause unless you are absolutely sure. And you are not absolutely sure.

Not my most meaningful post, but I needed to get that off my chest. I may have a few more depressing blogs in the future for more venting - sorry if this brings anyone down.