It seems like a lot of people are affronted these days. It has become a ministry of sorts. The word affront in the dictionary is defined as “an action or remark that causes outrage or offense.”
When challenged, some Christians who have adopted this ministry will use the example of Jesus in the Temple turning over tables and whipping people as their go-to reason for their actions. This example becomes their permission slip for being affronted by their favorite affronting flavor of the month. When that example is used to justify their decision it is usually the end of the conversation because their outrage has found a convenient place to live and multiply under the protective veil of religion and self-righteous indignation.
Outrage and offense, the things that fuel an affront, are there for a reason. Some things are truly outrageous and offensive, but they cannot be what motivates our interaction with people. Love must motivate our response to the world. This is not a weak and puny version of love. In its strength, it can wait to hear the other side of an issue before it forms a response instead of relying on a Facebook posting, a YouTube video or a brief news segment to form a worldview on a complex issue.
Affront sells, both in the Church and on the streets. The problem with always being affronted is the separation it creates in an already separated world. The spirit of affront is expert at fueling the engine of division and igniting undisciplined human emotion.
Be careful. The affront mongers have set up shop in the marketplace of your life hawking their wares to anyone willing and foolish enough to follow the lure of their appeal. They will use anything at their disposal to get you angry enough to take the bait. When that first bite is consumed it will upend your spiritual bowl that was once filled with the fruit of the Spirit and refill it with a cheap and damaging substitute called the fruit of the flesh.