Marti received an “Us” magazine in the mail a couple of days ago. I haven’t talked to her about this yet, but I’m sure it wasn’t something she chose. We’ve gotten caught in a few of those magazine subscription schemes. Usually it involves an inner-city kid who is trying to work his/her way out of the economic depression of the ghetto. Impressed by their congeniality and their ambitious goals, we help them out with a small donation and suddenly the next week we receive 14 magazines we don’t remember ordering. (A slight exaggeration, but you get the point.)
It’s just that I am certain that Marti would not have intentionally ordered “Us” magazine. “Us” is one step above a tabloid, if that. These are the self-serving star magazines that grace the checkout stands at major supermarkets and bottom-feed on the sordid details of the rich and famous. A little more respectable, there is now “People,” then there was “Us,” and when we received “Us” in the mail, I got an idea. How about a “Them” magazine? I looked it up to see if there was one and found “Them” was a fashion magazine from Japan that launched in 2014, and “them” was an LGBTQ internet platform. Those two aside, however, I’d like us to think for a minute about our own “Them” magazine. Do you own a “Them” magazine?
Why would a “Them” magazine be important to think about? It might help us identify how we think about people. Do we put people into categories? Do we separate ourselves from humanity in any way? Does anyone make us feel uncomfortable? For instance, I am more of a racist than I let on that I am. I like to think I’m colorblind, but I’m very aware of someone’s color.
If you had your own “Them” magazine, who would it be about? What people groups, races, religions, ages, social statuses, political parties, or sexual orientations make up “them” to you? Are homeless people who hold out signs at street corners “them?” to you? Who else?
How do you change a “them” to an “us?” This one is easy. You find out someone’s name and get to know them. That’s when someone ceases to be a “them,” and becomes simply one of us. And that’s what we want: less of them and more of us.
I think “Them” magazine would be worse than a tabloid. Article after article would incite hate by blaming “them” for everything. Just wondering though, is there a biblical them?
So God created mankind in his own image,
in the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them. Genesis 1:27
Hey wait a minute! That’s all of US!
LOL, Amen John!
That’s what I absolutely (not @ first) loved about building my Amway Bz was making ‘cold-contacts’ & teaching others in my group how to do it. What I liked about and teaching others to just go out and make a new friend & become interested in them.
And after 6 bumps (six times of going out for coffee or doing whatever and getting to know them) The cool part, that I liked & enjoyed was getting to know them, their likes, dislikes family, occupation, dreams & goals I got to know them & it helped me to know if I’d like to have them in my Biz, as Biz associates or keep them as a new friend.
In the Amway Biz system I once used, if they became an Independent Business Owner, (IBO) in my group, and ‘plugged in’ to using the Biz system sure enough they’d hear the Gospel and a few people did become believers (Praise God) and my favorite saying to a lot of the IBO’s b/c they’d often ask, do they have to be a Christian to be successful in my Amway Biz? (I learned how to reply from a man who once was my go to hero in Amway, Brad Doyle, my he RIP) He taught me to reply: “No you don’t, but it helps.” and more times then not, that would start a conversation, about Jesus & His love, which was the goal…
PS one of the many things I loved about Brad was I heard him say in God’s Kingdom I am not a Diamond. which here on Earth in Amway is a pretty high level of achievement & six figure yearly income and they can wake up in the morning when they feel like it plus is will able & transferable income to your Children’s children. As Proverbs 13:22 requires a Godly person should do.
Thanks, Mark, for taking the time to explain how different it is when a “them” becomes a person by name with hopes and dreams like everyone else.