Wednesday, March 22, 2017

A Sniveling Little Weasel Like You

Oddly, it is one of my all-time favorite movie lines. The movie is Independence Day. The evil aliens who want to wipe us from existence and steal our planet have invaded and the heroes of the movie have finally devised a plan to fight back. Everyone is onboard except the secretary of defense, Mr. Nimzicky, who has acted like a coward for the entire movie. As the final preparations for the attack are made, Nimzicky approaches the president trying to get him to drop the plan, claiming it is a mistake. Then Bill Pullman as the president delivers the line. "The only mistake I ever made was to appoint a sniveling little weasel like you Secretary of Defense. Fortunately, that is a mistake I don't have to live with. Mr. Nimzicky..." he pauses for just a moment... "you're fired."

"That is one of your favorite lines?" you ask. Yes. The entire movie this man has has a bad attitude. The entire movie his sour-puss attitude has pushed people into bad decisions. His defeatist attitude has done nothing but make it more difficult for those trying to save the planet. He has endorsed every senseless plan that has been presented and fought every plan that had a chance of working. When the president finally says, "Mr. Nimzicky, you're fired," the audience can't help but cheer because the "sniveling little weasel" has been removed from his position of influence. It also doesn't hurt that Nimzicky finally got his comeuppance.

The lesson the president finally learns is one that can also be found in Proverbs 22:10. "Drive out a mocker, and conflict goes too; then quarreling and dishonor will cease." Some people excel at stirring up trouble and causing strife, at polluting the atmosphere of attitudes and pushing us toward bad decisions. Their sarcastic attitude infects their environment and makes being productive or even positive nearly impossible.

When we encounter these people, we cannot allow them positions of influence in our lives. We cannot allow their sarcastic attitudes to influence our own or permit the drama they create to prevent us from accomplishing the tasks God has given us to compete. We must remove these people from places in our lives where they can wreak havoc or cause damage.

But more than that, we must make certain that we are not the toxic people who infect the atmosphere with our bad attitudes and create drama. We must make certain that we act as the light of the world and not in such a way that people want to shut us off.

Our lives do not have room for toxic attitudes and the drama that creates strife. Don't accept it from other people, but don't allow it in yourself either.

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