High school gym teacher, psychology teacher, and coach, Bob Grisham has recently become infamous for a bizarre tirade in which he lashed out at the First Lady, calling her fat, and then attacked queers as sinners, and condemned them all to hell, which he did in front of a group of teenagers. When the audio of that tirade went viral, and he found himself the subject of an investigation, he tried to walk back his comments by saying:
I misspoke in a debate-type situation. I have no hatred toward anyone or any group. People that know my heart, they know that.
This is a common refrain of the self-righteous, who find themselves called out for their bad behavior. “You don’t know my heart, but God does.” Yet, here’s the irony: We DO too… We know your heart just as well as God does because you just opened up your mouth and revealed it to us. You see, the Jesus whom you claim you serve, and whose name you besmirched with your rant, made a rather poignant observation:
No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit. Each tree is recognized by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from thornbushes, or grapes from briers. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.
Luke 6:43-45 NIV
In other words, despite what you want us to believe, you’re revealing yourself; telling us just who you truly are: bad fruit, a thornbush, a briar. The typical con of using the “heart” card might make you feel better, but it doesn’t MAKE you better. You may say, “You don’t know me,” but maybe I DO.
While it’s true that we’ve never met, you did just present yourself to me… this IS you. How is anybody supposed to know anything else if this is the ‘you’—you’re presenting to them? If you present yourself as angry, vitriolic, and self-righteous—if you lash out at queers, resort to name-calling, and display profoundly disrespect the First Lady, (despite the biblical injunction to honor those in power), then guess what… that’s who you are: out of the abundance of YOUR heart. Nobody made you say these things but your own heart—your own poisoned, briar-infested heart.
If you want to be known as something else, then present yourself as something else.
Mr. Grisham said in an interview that he wants us to believe that he is really a compassionate follower of Jesus, but his words betray him. There was no compassion in his words. If you want to be known as "compassionate"… then BE compassionate; let your words be compassionate.
When the rest of us observe something about 'you' that offends 'you'… don't bother telling us who you “really” are, because that's not who you just showed us. We’re only commenting on what—and who—you showed us. Very few people have access your background or your hidden thoughts about who you think you are… we only know the ‘you’ that you showed us.
It’s easier to blame others for their response to our bad behavior than it is to take responsibility for it, but that doesn’t change us. We are who we “say” we are… literally.