The Black Sharpie


Have you ever used a “black sharpie”? I’m guessing many of us have, at some point in our lives, used one. I didn’t realize how many shapes and sizes are availble to us now. In school teaching I used them for posters and projects. Occasionally I would use one on a package or letter to line out, permanently, an old address. Every once in a while I would accidently make a mark on my shirt or pants and I even remember leaving one in a pocket only to find out after it went into the washer and through the wash cycle. Yikes! This was not pretty! Sharpie marks are permanenet; I discovered.

Have you ever experienced a “black sharpie” in relationships? Do you know what I’m talking about? I observed one come out after the Seattle Seahawks victory over the San Francisco 49ers. See this link

This post game rant, if you will, created a huge buzz in the news. Sports commentators analyzed and dissected Richard Sherman during the week after the game and it will begin again this week, Super Bowl week. Many people put a “black sharpie” on Richard for these emotionally charged post game comments. A “black sharpie” permanently stains, as I mentioned above. It is loaded with permanent ink. Some folks have permanently judged Richard, marking him with a “black sharpie”. During one brief 45 seconds of his life, for all to see, he shares what he shares and gets the “black sharpie” from thousands. Yet, is this who he really is, 45 seconds defines him? This interaction happened before Richard’s outburst…see this video clip.

Then, to wrap up the sequence of events, see this interview with Richard some time later after the game.


So…have you put a ‘black sharpie” over Richard Sherman? If yes, what is at the root of your reason for picking up the “sharpie” and “X…ing” him out? Instead of just settling on your opinion as being right, sit back, reflect and explore what is going on inside of you.

Why? Because “grace expects and anticipates imperfection”. No one wants to be labeled as judgemental. Yet when we pull out the “black sharpie”, could it be possible that we are playing the judgement card? Are you qualified to be The Judge?

Think about it. When we use our “black sharpies” on people we will have a hard time getting “Relational Traction.”


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