In recent months a rash of videos have popped up on YouTube featuring teens (usually girls) asking online viewers: “Am I pretty?” The creators of these videos are looking for affirmation but have opened themselves to the hordes of anonymous comments by people prone to saying all sorts of cruel things (regardless of whether they think the subject of a video is pretty). Why would someone need such affirmation from people on the Internet, or even from peers at school? LinC talks about self-image. We’ll find affirmation in being children of God created in God’s image and look at ways we can affirm and uplift others. Key Scriptures: 1 Samuel 16:1-13; Isaiah 52:13–53:12; Mark 10:17-22; Acts 8:26-39.
The February 26 shooting of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin by George Zimmerman—who claimed self-defense and has not been charged for a crime—has raised all sorts of questions about stereotypes and prejudices: Did Zimmerman assume that Martin was a threat because of his race or clothing? Did law enforcement in Sanford, Florida accept Zimmerman’s story and not charge him with a crime for the same reasons? Has the public jumped to conclusions about Zimmerman and the law enforcement officials without knowing all the facts? Regardless of the answers to these questions, Trayvon Martin’s death is a tragedy that reveals a need to discuss prejudice, stereotyping, and jumping to conclusions. Next week LinC does exactly that, looking at ways we can avoid false witness by judging fairly.