October 1, 2020by Reverend Dan on October 1, 2020
"Let your moderation be known unto all men."
Don’t get me wrong. I’m all for a good party. Love to have fun. That being said . . .
Why do many of the things we do seem to eventually get out of hand? At a church I attended a long time ago, the folks decided to have coffee after church during a brief time of fellowship. After a few weeks of that, they decided to have “just a tray of cookies”. (The Youth Group approved that unanimously.) Then someone added another tray of cookies. Then a tray of fruit. One of vegetables. Finger sandwiches. Those little weenies in BBQ sauce in a crock pot. Within a year, whoever was in charge for the week had to outdo the previous week. Pretty soon it was a meal, and when it got to that point, no one wanted to ruin Sunday lunch, so no one stayed. The whole idea for the event – a time of fellowship after church - had been replaced by the need to “one up” someone else.
Today’s “over-the-top, out of control” events are the “Gender Reveal Parties” people are having. The parties started about ten years ago as a way for parents and grandparents and friends to learn the sex of a child who was going to be born soon. The first ones were simple enough – the couple would cut open a cake to find the inside blue or pink or they wouldd pop balloons filled with pink or blue confetti that would fly everywhere. OK, that was fun.
The problem has become that social media and our incessant need to “one up” someone else has turned the parties into spectacles that are dangerous and causing lots of harm.
- In April 2017 in Arizona, an off-duty Border Patrol agent was to fire his gun into a target filled with a colored powder which had a highly explosive substance in it. When the bullet hit the target, the explosion started a fire that spread into the Colorado National Forest and burned more than 45,000 acres which resulted in over $8 million damage and endangered the lives of over 800 firefighters.
- In April 2018 in Australia a “burnout” (putting a chemical substance in the muffler of a car so the smoke would blow pink or blue) caused a car to explode injuring the driver.
- In September 2019 in Texas a crop-dusting plane crashed when it stalled dumping 350 gallons of pink water.
- In October 2019 in Iowa a woman was killed when flying debris from a device which was supposed to shoot plumes of pink or blue smoke hit her.
- And just last month a fire was started in California when a smoke-generating device ignited a patch of four-foot-tall dead grass. Within a day, over 7,300 acres were burned including houses and businesses, and now a firefighter has died while battling the flames, which still continue over a month later.
I’m all about the fun. But as with everything else, moderation is the key. How would you like to be labeled for life as the child around whom a gender reveal party centered and killed people? Not a good legacy to start off with. Moderation in all things, folks.
"Father, Help us to learn to enjoy things in moderation and with wisdom. In Jesus' name, AMEN."