The song “Humble and Kind,” performed by Tim McGraw, and written by a woman named Lori McKenna in 2016, has always been one of my favorites.
The lyrics suggest a gentle way of being in the world. I ran off a copy of the lyrics and gave a copy to each of the three young Mormon men who came to talk to me on my deck about their religion.
I am not religious, even though I have spent a majority of my career in music ministry. We talked at length about things that matter to us. If I add their ages together, I still have lived longer than them. But they are already wise in the ways that matter — kindness and humility.
I listened to the three polite young men. I talked. I discussed what I understand, and what I thought does not align with my own interpretation. We were all kind. It has been a pleasure to see what fine young men they are. They are all from out of state, here on mission.
Many times in history, things have been done in the name of religion that are questionable. I have worked in churches much of my life, and churches have more politics than the White House (no matter who is in office!)
Business people know this. I know it from living it. There is not kindness nor humility in many churches. Some have an overabundance.
And right now, we have a shortage of kindness and humility that is way bigger than the shortage of toilet paper. People have forgotten how to listen and discern and speak kindly.
The internet chat rooms seem to be a cesspool. A local candidate for trustee wrote a nasty response online to me when I asked him questions. He advertises his religious affiliation. He is not humble, and he is not kind. And he wrote an online response to my questions without humility and kindness. This is a person I’ve known for a long time and spoken to at Orion Chamber events. When did kindness disappear from his people skills?
Above all the noise, I am voting for kindness and humility in the candidates. Moms taught that skill from the beginning. Say please and thank you. The song was written by a woman who has five children. News flash: Jesus did not start a church. He talked about how to live, just like this song does.
Humble and Kind (partial lyrics)
You know there’s a light that glows by the front door, don’t forget the keys under the mat/When childhood stars shine, always stay humble and kind…
Humility. Of the earth. Close to the ground of being a human being. That’s my vote this year.
Peggy Barry Bartz