As I drive north on 380 from home, there is a field right by the interstate that has a homespun billboard. For five years, I have been disappointed by the trite, sometimes offensive, and always partisan slogans that grace this sign.
Maybe part of my disappointment is there is no opportunity for relationship or conversation. What is the point of having a sign without a vehicle to interact? I want to know why this person thinks what they do, why they feel the need to so visually post their thoughts, and what impact they think they are making. Typically this kind of negative sloganism promotes further division rather than a bridging of opinions.
I actually saw him once, out there changing the words to “Obummer… more lies” (with the iconc ‘O’ of the Obama campaign”) one day as I drove whizzing past. I must admit feeling… well, not ill thoughts towards this gentleman, but certainly not pleasant ones. I do remember exclaiming, “really?” on one of my last drives.
But today when I drove by, I was more than pleasantly surprised. In place of the usual partisan soundbyte was a sign that read:
God bless medical workers.
My feelings about this person increased a hundred-fold. Who is this guy? Why the switch to a positive message? What would happen if instead of spewing spin and negative slandars we took more time to pray together, to celebrate good work, to point to where God is active?
My entire drive I thought about that sign.
I thought about my family members who work in the healthcare industry. I thought about doctors and nurses who had cared for me and for loved ones. I thought about all the medical professionals involved in the tragedies this week in Boson, MA and West, TX. I thought about those who are working to fight malaria.
I don’t know whose sign it is.
I’m not any closer to relationship with that man.
But he is in my prayers tonight. I thank God for some good words on a long drive and for a perceived change in attitude.
I am hoping the next sign inspires me as much as this last one.