Whenever people find out I am a pastor they say all sorts of things. Often people will try to convince me of what a good person they are, its almost cute.
Recently I had someone tell me "I'm a good person, I always let people into my home, and help whoever needs help." The interesting thing was that this person was saying all of this to me to justify their present state of drunkenness, and the vulgarity that had been dripping from their mouth for the 30 minutes they were talking to me before they knew I was a pastor.
But when they said this, something clicked…
In the culture I grew up in, people would often say "I'm a good person…" but the rationale was different, "I'm a good person because I don't steal, use drugs, or hurt people."
But what this person told me was indicative of a different cultural norm, and they were definitely not the first person to show this to me, it was just the first time I had noticed it this clearly.
The culture of my upbringing defined 'goodness' as purity and righteousness.
The culture of many I interact with now define 'goodness' as hospitality and charity.
I'm not sure that one is better or worse, but the difference is there...