The Golden Rule

rs have noted that “the golden rule” holds true most of the time. The most universal statement of the principle is this: “Whatever you do onto others, they will probably do unto you.” There is a lot of evidence to support this notion.

This principle, which prevails more often than not, has been working successfully in our world for a very long time. Who started this principle first, scholars and historians don’t know. The ancient Greeks, the Chinese, and the Egyptians all had it in one form or another. As people of faith, we remember it best, however, as stated by Jesus when he said, “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”

I like Jesus’ twist on this ancient principle. What if I responded to others in a way that I would want them to respond to me if I were in their situation? Today, I will try to put myself in the position of a Medicaid recipient who lacks appropriate healthcare due to the privatization disaster in Iowa. Today, I will try to better understand the plight of those seeking a new life for their families at our southern border. Today, I am remembering those in Marshalltown who lack adequate housing due to our tornado. I would hope, if I were in any of these situations, I would be greeted with love, compassion and in a way that any of us would want to be treated. Trying to “walk in another’s shoes” and then responding in a way that we would want them to respond to us is what the golden rule is all about.

Another part of this important principle is that the table could be easily turned. Life has a way of putting today’s giver in the position of receiver tomorrow, and vice versa. How much different our world would be if we practiced this simple rule of life. What would it hurt to offer each other a little more respect and kindness?