Many years ago, I was training a young cop who needed an attitude adjustment. One night, we pulled over a biker for a traffic violation. I had my rookie make contact. He was still maturing in his new role of authority and sounded pushy and arrogant when he spoke to the biker. When he walked back to our patrol car to write the citation, I let him have it.
I said this is a freebie – no ticket today. Go back and talk to the biker like you would if you ran into him and his biker club while walking alone down a dark alley. You would not be so rude and dishonoring in that setting. He did just what I told him to do. He looked like he just got spanked. As a mellower version of the conversation took place, the biker looked past the rookie back toward me and smiled. He knew what had just taken place.
The world we live in allows us to live behind a veneer of social insulation. We can make unrighteous comments on social media or in hushed coffee shop conversations about people we will never meet like we are some badass overly confident rookie cop with an inflated ego who needs an attitude adjustment. We hide behind our badges of supposed spiritual authority and toss out rude and dishonoring comments like we will never meet the recipient of our demeaning words in the dark alley of relational reality.
Today, check your attitude, especially if you have a place of authority in another person’s life. If you allow God to humble you in word and deed you may gain a friend who will actually become your only ally in a future encounter in a dark alley of personal vulnerability. Even those you consider an enemy will remember your kind and respectful words.