By Roger Alford
I’ve been amazed by just how much “horn cussing” is going on these days. You’ve heard it, the angry honking of car horns. It has become almost epidemic, even in parts of the South.
I saw a fellow the other day who had taken “horn cussing” to a whole new level. He was cruising along in a tricked-out Jeep Rubicon. He was sitting way up there. The tires were huge. The brush bar was shiny chrome. He was clearly at home in the urban jungle.
There he was at a clogged intersection in a suburb just north of Atlanta. Horns started blaring at him. You know, beeps here, honks over there. Well, the fellow in the Rubicon had somehow rigged a train’s air horn beneath that shiny waxed hood. The blast rattled windows when he responded to the ire.
It was amusing to watch the scene play out. I hope those angry drivers learned a valuable lesson that day, be careful who you get in a “horn cussing” match with.
It reminded me of the time some years ago when my pickup truck broke down at a red light. When the light turned green, a lady in the car behind me started honking her horn angrily. I glanced in the rearview mirror, and I recognized the silhouetted hairdo. It was an unmistakable hairdo. It was the pianist from church. She hadn’t recognized me. And she was giving me a good “horn cussing.” I could only imagine how embarrassed she must have been when I got out and motioned for her to drive around my stalled vehicle.
I’m convinced the Lord isn’t pleased when we’re angrily honking at one another. In fact, we’re admonished in Psalm 37:8 to refrain from anger for it can only bring harm.
Did you ever know anyone who is always mad about one thing or another? Those kinds of people sure aren’t much fun to be around.
I suspect you’ve noticed that lots of people across America are angry these days. We see them on TV, fussing about anything and everything. We see them on Facebook, complaining constantly. We hear them griping about neighbors, spouses, retailers, government leaders, you name it. They complain about their churches, their pastors, their denominational leaders.
Last weekend, I was walking through a beautiful Georgia state park that was being used by lots of new immigrants to the U.S. Honestly, I don’t ever remember having heard so much laughter, so much happiness. These folks were truly enjoying America and all her bounty. They were absolutely delighted by simple things that so many of us take for granted, like the taste of a grilled hotdog smeared with ketchup or mustard, a frosty Pepsi fished out of a Styrofoam cooler, children giggling as they splash in water along the shallow edge of a lake, proud mothers and fathers taking it all in, seeing their families enjoy the blessings of being in America.
Contrast that with people who spend so much of their time “sore” about one thing or another. They spend their days listening to talking heads on TV and radio who give them a fresh supply of things to be angry about. They read angry bloggers who tell them just how awful things are, who tell them they should be angry about this or that or the other.
The truth is it’s hard to have a convincing Christian witness when we’re angry. We read in James 1:19-20 that we should be quick to hear, slow to speak, and slow to anger, for man’s anger does not accomplish God’s righteousness.
Perhaps we could add to the biblical admonition about being slow to speak and slow to anger” that we should also be slow to honk.
There really is entirely too much “horn cussing” going on.