The pregnant girl walking down the street, she got raped.
The boy you called lame, he has to work every night to support his family.
That girl you pushed down the other day, she's already being abused at home.
That girl you called fat, she's starving herself.
The old man you made fun of cause ugly scars, he fought for our country.
The boy you made fun of for crying, his mother is dying.
You think you know them.
This posting, I found on my Facebook page Friday morning, placed by a seventh grade student at the Spencer Middle School.
I have no idea what spurred her to post something like this. I don't know if it was an original thought; I'm guessing it was probably something she saw and re-posted, but I can't be sure.
What ran through my mind as I read it, "What is she seeing or experiencing that would lead her to share something like this?"
It gave me a moment of pause.
Are our hearts this cold? Sadly, many must answer yes. Plenty of people take pleasure in others pain or sadness. We find our superiority in others perceived flaws or weaknesses. Sometimes they aren't flaws or weaknesses at all. Instead, they are signs of courage or struggle or pain. They are signs associated with someone's struggle to overcome, or perhaps, a lasting mark from something they have already walked through.
I've just begun participating in a men's group in town, focused on building Godly men in culture that at its very best challenges us on a daily basis to stand on our morals, and at the very least works hard to submarine the intentions of men of character and standards.
The group is using the study material based on the movie "Courageous," and the pledge which the four main characters swear to undertake to be better husbands, fathers and models of Christ on earth.
If it sounds like a tall task, I can assure you it is. This book strips you down and causes you to examine all of your flaws, then challenges you - with the help of Christ and your brothers-in-arms - to be a better man.
When I think about the words posted on Facebook, it becomes very clear we have failed our children if anything like what is described is taking place. And we know it is.
It's time for the men in this community to rise up and set the example for their families, join hands with their wives, and show - by action - the way we are supposed to live in one nation under God.
It starts at home. It's not the job of the school or our neighbors - though their help and reinforcement is always appreciated - it is ours as parents.
So take some time to examine your life. Ask yourself if you're the kind of model Christ has put you on this earth to be - a mirror image of himself.
I assure you I fall very short. Often. More often than I thought. But I'm working on it and will continue to do so each and every day. I encourage you to do the same. If you do, the images raised by the opening few sentences in my column this week will hopefully fade away.