Indignant? Who, me?

Indignation is a go-to outlet for many of us today. We’re often being invited by news or social media to react to each other in a self-righteous way. Perceived offences seem like real opportunities for righteous indignation—especially when we feel we have good cause to be cross. But is that ever a truly healing and beneficial response? And if not, then how can thoughtful, prayerful people express their righteous concerns and be advocates for justice in our world—without being indignant?

That small phrase, “righteous indignation,” caught my attention in a recent newspaper article. Hmm. Had I been harboring that feeling? I looked up dictionary definitions of indignation and found that they include “feeling or showing anger or annoyance against what is perceived as unfair treatment,” and that synonyms are words such as resentment, affront, displeasure. To say we’re “displeased” at something could seem to be an acceptably mild reaction. But the definition and synonyms I found had uncovered that this seemingly inoffensive term was from the same family as anger and resentment, and I didn’t want to harbor those feelings. 

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What sets the captive free?
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