Why is common sense not so common anymore? What has happened to it? Where did it go?
Why are good manners not readily seen or utilized very much anymore? What has happened to them? Where did they go?
I'm not sure, but common sense and good manners seem to have faded away to near nonexistence.
Is it not simply common sense to not text while you are driving?
Is it not common sense to not drive a vehicle when inebriated?
It is not common sense to not pick a fight with someone who is larger and stronger than you?
When did it become uncommon to hold a door open for someone entering a store behind you, or opening one for a person coming out of a store?
When did it become uncommon to say "thank you" to someone who did something kind?
I think it is a shame that so many of the niceties people used to exhibit toward one another have gone by the wayside. In their place now is a myopic view of life — "What's in it for me?" or "I don't care what you need or think."
That's kind of what it comes down to, isn't it? Not caring — unless of course "my" life is interrupted or injured in some fashion or other. Then a person will raise a ruckus.
For one, I am glad God does not treat us the way we treat one another. Yes, God more than likely gets greatly disappointed with some of our actions and attitudes. He probably gets distressed by letting us endure the consequences of our own actions.
But God never turns his back on us. God never gives up on us. God never stops loving us and hoping our behaviors will turn toward the better. God keeps encouraging us to do better, to walk more solidly in his ways, to follow the kind of lifestyle that is one of kindness, generosity, forgiveness and grace.
Here is my challenge to you. Today, hold open the door for a person entering a store or building after you, or open it for a person coming out. Wish them a good day in the process.
If someone does an act of kindness toward you, say "thank you" with all sincerity. If someone offends you or cuts you off in traffic, remain calm and refrain from a caustic remark, and say a quiet prayer for the other person and for yourself.
The more of us who do this, the more others may follow suit, and God will be pleased.
The Rev. Mark Broadhead is pastor at Laurel Hill Presbyterian Church and First Presbyterian Church of Crestview.