Good Tuesday morning to all. Please find today’s message below:
When I woke up this morning, my thoughts went back to last week when Supreme Court nominee, Ketanji Brown Jackson, was humiliated publicly by many in the Republican Party. What I admired about her was the fact that through it all, she kept her head up high and would not let them win the battle by demeaning her.
When a person can keep their composure under intense pressure, it is not a sign of weakness rather strength and courage. In some cases, intense questioning with disrespect, indignity, and hatred is an attempt to get a person to snap, retaliate or break under pressure so that there is reason for disapproval or disqualification. As we saw on last week during the confirmation hearing for the Supreme Court nominee, Ketanji Brown Jackson, we witnessed an example of a strong and resilient Black woman. Some of us would have responded with the same type of behavior demonstrated by members of the Republican Party questioning. I even at one point said to myself, “Why does she allow them to disrespect and dishonor her in such an awful way?” I answered my own question with a response of, because she is brilliant, qualified and a woman with strong deep roots and values. Yes, some of us would have been petrified and responded with distaste, but this woman kept her composure in a hostile and antagonistic environment.
I have to agree with Senator Cory Booker in that this woman is definitely a Christian and an intellect as demonstrated by her actions and responses. She is truly a dignified and very capable person for the job. This was an attempt to embarrass, shame and disgrace a Black woman in front of her children, spouse, parents, colleagues, country, friends, etc., but she withstood the test of time and kept her composure. This is truly a case of going up against the odds and not giving up and coming out a winner.
It breaks my heart, but a good example of losing your composure is what happened at the Oscars between Chris Rock and Will Smith. There is no way that we can dignify the behavior of Will Smith, for he simply lost his composure due to the remarks made by Chris Rock. His receiving the academy award for best leading role in the movie King Richard was tarnished because he lost his composure.
A Bible character who should have lost his composure with the kings was Daniel. His work ethic was impeccable and they could not find anything wrong with his work so the evil men of the time attacked his faith (Daniel 6). He had every right to become angry and lose his composure when he heard they were going to throw him in the lion’s den. But Daniel’s composure and confidence in God allowed him to avoid the mouths of the lions and come out of the den unscathed. This is a good lesson that our composure will also shut the mouths of those evil lion- like people who are trying to tear us down and stain your reputation.
Can you remember a time when you were mistreated and verbally abused, but you maintained your composure? You were hurt and devastated, yet God helped you retain your composure. After it was all over, you may have said, “Why did I allow that person or persons to do that to me?” The answer sometimes is because God has something bigger for us. We just have to reset!
Three things we can do when we are in situations like Judge Jackson:
- Do not retaliate. We see in scripture even Jesus keeping his composure.
“And as a sheep before its shearers is silent, so He opened not his mouth” (Isaiah 53:7). When Jesus was reviled, did not revile in return when; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself to Him who judges righteously” (1 Peter 2:23)
- Pray to the one who can contain you, Holy Spirit. Romans 8:26-27 says, “The Spirit helps us in our weakness. The Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.”
- Be encouraged and know that God is in control.
Lesson learned: Treat people the way you want to be treated. Talk to people the way you want to be talked to. Everyone deserves respect.
If you are confronted by the enemy today, keep your composure!
Not a sermon, just my thoughts!
Robert Earl Slade, Pastor