The most common defense of a teenager is, But everybody else is… whenever a parent says no, the argument is that the child is missing out because “everybody else is” going to the party, the movie, staying up later, wearing that kind of clothing, listening to that kind of music, etc.
Thankfully, my husband and I have not heard this lament from our sons. They have been taught from a very young age that our house rules are what matter, not the rules of someone else’s house.
Everybody else is… seems to be the excuse for so many to whine about a perceived slight they have experienced. But, from where I am, I started thinking of these words from a different perspective.
Everybody else is:
still in need of the basics — food, clothing, and shelter in this world of plenty
still in need of love in this world where hatred and anger seem to rule (Matthew 5:38-42).
still in need of forgiveness in this world where grudges are encouraged (Luke 1:77)
still in need of a kind word in a world where criticism is too often spoken (Colossians 3:12)
still in need of grace in a world when punishment is too often demanded (Ephesians 2:8-9)
We are all of us– in need of love, mercy, grace, forgiveness, kindness, and physical care.
Maybe we need to start looking at the “everybody else is” statement with these kinds of eyes. Not lamenting that we don’t get something, but seeking to make sure everyone else does.
“The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me’ (Matthew 25:40).