How To Take An Unpopular Stand

Two weeks after U.S. Soccer announced that their men’s and women’s teams will be wearing rainbow-colored jerseys in support of gay pride month in June, one player has removed herself from the team.

Jaelene Hinkle has seemingly taken a very unpopular stand on a hot-button issue. I say seemingly because she has simply stated “personal reasons” for her decision.

From what outsiders such as myself can determine, Ms. Hinkle is a Christian woman with deep convictions. Her self-removal from the team gives every appearance that she followed her principles when presented with the following scenario: The team made a decision that would require her to violate her convictions. In response, she quietly and voluntarily removed herself from the team.

It is notable that Ms. Hinkle did not blame anyone for the decision, nor did she try to come across as a victim. She did not blast out on social media her reasons for leaving the team. She simply stated “personal reasons,” even when pressed to expand on her answer.

The manner in which we respond to others is often as important as our beliefs. Ms. Hinkle seems to understand this. Here are some lessons we can learn from her:

  • No one can cause you to violate your convictions.
  • Sometimes the most powerful witness is a quiet one.
  • Season your courage with kindness.

What convictions are important reflections of your faith? If a situation arises in which you are asked to set them aside, how will you respond?

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