Last week was just one of those weeks. You know the ones, the ones where you are just slammed at work and you just never seem to get a minute to breathe? I wasn’t feeling well physically either, which didn’t help matters.
Besides all of that, every time I logged onto Facebook for a little diversion, I was assaulted by opinions on NFL players and their treatment of the National Anthem and the American Flag.
The entire ordeal is mind boggling to me. Sports, any kind, is one of those forces that has the ability to unite people of all colors, classes and political convictions. It doesn’t matter who I have ever sat next to at any sporting event, if we are cheering for the same team, we are friends. It’s the same way at the concession stand or even in the bathroom for that matter.
So what happened?
Last season, one NFL player elected not to stand for the National Anthem. Some media outlet chose to give that guy the spotlight. The other media outlets jumped in. Chaos, division and anarchy sells. I could point out that there’s another dark force that thrives on chaos, division and anarchy.
So this season, the entire NFL jumped into the Anthem fray along with all of the mass media, and social media went wild.
It never ceases to amaze me how easy it is to get people to turn on each other. Who do you think enjoys that the most?
When I think back to the photos of the firemen hoisting that flag from the ashes of the World Trade Center and how it offered a glimmer of hope to an entire nation, I can’t imagine not standing for it.
After Hurricane Irma, police officers in Savannah saved a flag from the marsh and hoisted it back up. The picture was put on social media and was viewed 54,000 times. The flag gives us hope. When we recite the pledge, we stand and we are reminded that we are one nation under God, protected by God and blessed by God. Is the problem perhaps, that we are failing at the under God part and that, that failure is leading to all of this division?
Thankfully, last Friday night, I was treated to a snapshot of hope. Our high school football team was playing its rival from across town. The two bands from the opposing teams came together and played the National Anthem. EVERYONE stood on both sides. The flag and the anthem united us as it always has.
I fought tears as I gave a silent prayer of thanks for small town America and the values that it holds dear. As if that wasn’t enough, when our team came running onto the field breaking through their banner, a player was carrying the flag, waving it proudly. The crowd went wild. He ran for a few extra loops before sticking it in the ground.
I think the Bible said something about a child leading the way. This child got it right and these are the stories we should share. Perhaps you needed a little hope today too.
Have an awesome day!