The Right Thing to Do

Make no mistake, God is not mocked. A person will harvest what they plant. Those who plant only for their own benefit will harvest devastation from their selfishness, but those who plant for the benefit of the Spirit will harvest eternal life from the Spirit. Let’s not get tired of doing good, because in time we’ll have a harvest if we don’t give up. 10 So then, let’s work for the good of all whenever we have an opportunity, and especially for those in the household of faith.

11 Look at the large letters I’m making with my own handwriting! 12 Whoever wants to look good by human standards will try to get you to be circumcised, but only so they won’t be harassed for the cross of Christ. 13 Those who are circumcised don’t observe the Law themselves, but they want you to be circumcised, so they can boast about your physical body.

14 But as for me, God forbid that I should boast about anything except for the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ. The world has been crucified to me through him, and I have been crucified to the world. 15 Being circumcised or not being circumcised doesn’t mean anything. What matters is a new creation. 16 May peace and mercy be on whoever follows this rule and on God’s Israel. (Galatians 6:7-16, Common English Bible)

For this “Song Sounds Saturday,” as today is Independence Day I have gone back and forth as to what my post for today should be. If we have watched the news in recent days there has been a great deal of talk about our individual rights. The rights of the people are indeed one of the things that make the United States great and Indpendence Day is a great time to celebrate the rights of our free state, its people, and the philosophies that created them and allows us to live in a land of rights and freedoms.

At the same time, however, I fear we have begun to ignore or at the very least forgotten that what makes our rights work is to recognize that we are not the only ones with rights and sometimes one persons rights stands in opposition of the rights of another. When I always worry more about me and what is mine (i.e. MY rights) we may well be limiting the time we will have in the future to celebrate our rights. Why? I believe our rights will only stand when we recognize that my rights can only stand as I listen and accept the rights of others and we find ways to honor our rights, yours, and mine.

To that end, I decided I would address the importance of our rights with a poem addressing the idea that having the right to do something, doesn’t make it the right thing to do. I hope you find these words useful.

The Right Thing to Do

We fail to give, so all will be free,
The rights of all, we cannot agree.

This land is your land, this land is mine,
Our freedom stands and our rights a sign
Freedom and rights, our talk is trite,
To have the right, won’t make this thing right.

Why is that man, wearing a mask
Masks do no good, he should ask
Leave your mask home so smiles shine bright
To have the right, won’t make this thing right.

Why is that man, acting so dumb
That does no good, his brain must be numb
Throw that away, freedom shines bright
To have the right, won’t make this thing right.

She screamed of the laws that people break
With her deed done, more than rude is at stake.
Rights of others, taken in flight,
To have the right, won’t make this thing right.

You have your rights, I have mine too
Anger from each side, that’s nothing new
Feet stomp, fists clinch, let’s get on with the fight
To have the right, won’t make this thing right.

Those who know call masks good things
A piece of cloth good health could bring
A simple act, might win this fight,
To have the right, doesn’t make this thing right.

Life in freedom, can be a mess
Striving for love, and know God will bless
Both you and me, shine freedom’s light
We have the right, let’s go make this right.

This land is your land, this land is mine,
Our freedom stands, our rights a sign
Freedom and rights, as talk is trite,
To have the right, doesn’t make this thing right.

When we both give, people are free,
For rights of all, please can we agree.

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