Jesus was a protester! It’s true. Jesus confronted the leaders about their wrong practices, evil thoughts, and destructive deeds (Mark 2:1-12; Luke 11)*. Jesus broke the religious expectations and laws of the day, to the point of people wanting him to die (John 5:16; Mark 3:1-6)*. Jesus was viciously challenged, mocked, scrutinized, threatened, slandered, ridiculed, besmirched, and discredited by authorities and leaders (Luke 11: Matt. 9:34; Matt. 13:56-58)*.
Jesus devoted his life to speaking, helping, supporting, defending, empowering, healing, freeing, and loving everyone, especially saving those who were in desperate need from the hands of oppressors, rulers, officials, mobs, and those who intended to harm, kill, and destroy. So what’s my point? It’s ok to be a protester, but we need to be sure our cause is just and our heart is right. The problem I see, is that so many people spew venom and hate whilst protesting. They loose the original intent or heart of the protest. Mission drift if you will. If your message is about equality and treating all humans with respect, love, tolerance and understanding, than you NEED to present your protest in that same spirit. The irony does not get lost, when protesting on such issues with a spirit of hatred for those who are targeted with your protest. In America we are blessed with the 1st amendment, the right to free speech. I am glad we are free to protest, to speak our minds and our hearts. Unfortunately, so many get lost in the emotional firestorm, and loose their voice by their contradictory actions. It is important to be heard, but not at the cost or your actual message. Action always speak louder than words. – Pastor Shawn Harnish
*excerpts from Stephen Mattson