I remember the first time I disobeyed a posted sign. I felt like such a rebel.
Signs are really powerful for us. But the signs I want to talk about today aren’t the flat signs with words and warnings printed on them.
I want to talk about the kinds of signs we look for, and listen for, that let us know if someone else is a part of our tribe, or not.
Like the way people dress.
There are all kinds of signs that are indicators, that create an in-group and an out-group. There are all kinds of signs that say, “You’re either with us, or you’re against us. And they’re not always physical signs.
The way we dress, or talk, what we talk about, who we listen to, who we hate…all of these things are signs that say what group we belong to. All of these things are signs that tell us who we are.
Signs and the belonging they signify are powerful, so powerful that they short-circuit our ability to reason and they short circuit our faith. Signs pre-determine what we believe to be true.
I have a notoriously bad memory. I can’t remember anything. Which is funny because at least half of Megan’s and my conversations involve reminiscing. and I really love them because for me it’s like storytime! Megan tell me great stories about when the kids were little, or things we did in New York and she assures me that I was there! And I’m sure I was. But I sure can’t remember. At least not the details.
I do however have perfect recall of every time I’ve been hurt! And especially for every time someone hurt or was less than kind and considerate to someone in my family. There are 12-14 year olds in Ohio who I would probably recognize right now because they wouldn’t share with Mac or Andrew 10 years ago. They’re still on my list and they’d better watch their backs. No, not really. I forgive all of them, if they even did anything wrong.
It’s just funny how memories work. At least how mine works, or doesn’t. Beautiful perfect days all fade into each other and eventually away. But anything unpleasant? 4K HD resolution forever.