Mr. Potter’s Valet

As it is our custom, a day or two before Christmas we all sit down to watch the Christmas classic It’s a Wonderful Life. The movie has a great message about one’s influence upon others in his life and the dramatic ending never fails to bring tears to our eyes. Over the last couple of years, however, I have developed a real disdain for one particular character in the movie. You are probably thinking that I am talking about Mr. Potter. Nope. I expect Mr. Potter to be as he is. He is, as George Bailey says, a warped frustrated old man and he acts accordingly. No, the one I am thinking of does not have even one line of dialogue and appears very little. Nevertheless, the attitude or disposition represented by this character infuriates me every time I watch the movie. I suppose he angers me so much because his is an attitude held by many today. The one about whom I speak is Mr. Potter’s valet. The man who pushes Mr. Potter around in his wheelchair. This man knows full and well all the intimate details of Potter’s crooked dealings, yet he never says a word to expose his villainy. In my judgment, he is just as evil as Mr. Potter.

Edmund Burke said The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing. The apostle Paul said And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them. (Ephesians 5:11 KJV, emphasis mine, p.e.p.) Christians cannot stand idly by in the midst of evil because they don’t want to get involved. Not only are we to not have any part with the evil works of darkness we must actively reprove them. Regarding the word reprove, Webster’s 1828 dictionary says: To blame, to censure, to charge with fault to the face, to convince of a fault, to make manifest. These ideas are a long way from keeping silent because one doesn’t want to get involved.

Through their silence many are giving their stamp of approval to the reprehensible sins of our current society. We need to speak out and stand up for what is right. One of the most practical ways this can be done is through the ballot box. In my judgment, the two sins that will damn our culture to the ash heap of history are the sins of abortion and homosexuality (esp. gay marriage). Just about every candidate up and down the ballot has publicly stated his or her position on these issues. Christians must not let their allegiances to this or that political party override their allegiance to Christ and doing what is right.

Paul Pryor

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