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Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Doing the right thing

My dad once told me, "you can never go wrong doing the right thing."

The right thing is not always easy.

The right thing is not always popular.

The right thing doesn't always seem justified.

But it is the right thing.

I read this story recently:

"Over the last couple of weeks we've all heard the story of POW Jessica Lynch's rescue in an Iraqi hospital. Last week we learned a little more about how it took place.

An Iraqi lawyer told U.S. forces where to find her. He made the decision to assist in her rescue after seeing her slapped in the face by a guard—a sight that, in his words, "cut my heart."

He and his wife, who works at the hospital, spent the next few days gathering information and making hand-drawn maps of the building's layout, giving the information to U.S. intelligence officers.

Why did he do it? He said he simply couldn't watch the mistreatment of a fellow human being without taking action. Even though it could have cost him his life, he made Jessica's rescue possible.

This young Iraqi lawyer has been an inspiration to American troops—and he's an example for us all to follow."

There will be times when you are faced with the prospect of doing something risky--but you know it's right thing to do. Maybe defending someone who can't defend themselves; maybe speaking the truth when the truth is not welcome; maybe putting your life on the line for a complete stranger. Sometimes we have to take risks—both big and small—in order to what is right.

It takes what we have seen in this Iraqi civilian: courage and love. I don't know what his religious beliefs are, but I know in this instance he lived out the words of Paul...

Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be men of courage; be strong. Do everything in love. (1 Corinthians 16:13-14) q


Jon said...

I wrote a little about this in Tuesday's blog response, dealing with my work issues. I don't know how this is going to work out for me but I am trusting God that He will deal with the issue and place me where He wants me to be. My job issues are a far sight from what this lawyer and his wife did in Iraq and his compassion for a foreign invader in his country tells a lot about him. Now, it's obvious that he did not see this soldier as a foreign invader or even as a soldier...he saw her as a human being deserving of certain rights, protections, and expectations of appropriate care and behavior. That's what he didn't see from those in charge of the situation at the hospital, so he worked to fix the situation. Bless him!

So often, in our situations, we don't stand up and let people know when they are doing the wrong thing (no, I'm not talking about condemnation but I am talking about information) as we have become a country of "Not my problem" people. This phenomenon began many decades ago in our big cities and has spread to the suburbs, and even the rural areas, throughout the intervening time.

An old saying is "It takes a village to raise a child" but this country left that type of philosophy long ago. I can remember that every parent in my neighborhood was active in what kids were doing in the neighborhood...and were not reluctant to step up and tell us when we were doing something wrong. Not only telling us but also letting our parents know so that appropriate discipline could occur. Now, at the time, I'm sure I did not like this parent conspiracy but, as I look at our world (country, city, neighborhood) today, I see the need for just this type of involvement. We all have a responsibility to do the right thing...even when we will be chastized, marginalized, or ostracized for our families, church, and neighborhoods. I've found it to be easier to be proactive (that is, let other parents know how/what I believe and how I will act regarding their children) with other parents so that it comes as no surprise when I do have to deal with them on any issues with their children...invariably, the first response is "Oh, we'd appreciate that." However, when I do have to deal with something, I am more prone to get a "Not my child" or "Why are you interfering?" response...I truly feel blessed any time I get a "Thank you for the information" or a "We'll take care of it" response. But I try not to let the negative responses cause me to stop doing right...I struggle with this, especially with families I do not know, but it's what we are called to do in our homes and in our jobs and in our communities.

Wow, I was only going to put in a quick note but have now rambled on (AGAIN!). Anyway, God Bless and Keep all of you, parents and children, employers and employees, homeowners and renters, etc.

Love God, Love People (and join a small group today!)


Youth Extreme said...

Doing the right thing..Sometimes as a leader that means admitting I was wrong, that the decision was a bad one, that the action I took was the wrong one. But it is more then admitting, it is taking the responsibility without making excusses. It is doing the right thing, to step up and accept that you are wrong and willing to suffer the consequences as a result. Sometimes when the risk is great, but the reward is means being looked at as a hero it is easier to take on the task and try. It is a lot harder to do the right thing when the only reward is criticism, anger, and hurt. It is at that time I lean on God the most, take a deep breath and plow forward to accept what is coming....And let me tell you I have had several of these times in my life. Each time I come out the other side, stronger and more dependent on God....