We love hearing what we want to hear, what justifies our position, what makes our perspective seem correct. So there is something for everyone this political season, locally and for 2012. We may not care how accurate the words are, just so we like them. You’d think with all the avenues of voluminous words these days that there would be just as much fact checking for all we hear and read. It seems though that whoever speaks the loudest, with self-assurance, and repeats it enough, becomes the proclaimer of truth – truth good enough for us anyway.
Perhaps we should be wary too of Biblical quotations and the meaning given to them. We need to all do some truth checking ourselves. Even beyond quotes, the “truth” we need to check is the source called the Spirit, yes, that active, vibrant, imaginative presence of God that honors us, letting us personally discern without all those other loud, “authoritative” voices, so we can become the director of our own conscience.
Don’t let anyone tell you how to think, to vote, to experience God. God has given each of us the freedom to check the source.
Speaking of freedom of thought and voice, looking at some of those who taking part in the “occupy” movement, we may be suspicious. They look like they are happy not to work, to live off others or to cause chaos. Why do we seem to find the excuse to dismiss the whole when labeling a few. Where do we get off even assessing (nice word for judging) those who may not be able to cope. Perhaps we fall into that tendency of many in the Bible who dismiss Jesus for hanging out with those who are on the edge, those who don’t fit or perhaps don’t even want to fit. And perhaps we fall into that other tendency in the Bible that blames those who are without for being their only problem. We say they deserve whatever situation they’re in. So, I guess the flip side is that we deserve our own situation? These anti-community, anti-responsible remarks are ones we fall into, because they let us off the hook from understanding, from action, from communal vision. God is present with our “occupy” brothers and sisters. May God occupy us.
I hope the occupy movement is here to stay – we need a revolution!
Speaking of revolutions, Ephesians 2 says, “Jesus is our peace; in his flesh he has made both groups into one and has broken down the dividing wall, that is, the hostility between us…. that he might create in himself one new humanity in place of the two, thus making peace…So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are citizens with the saints and also members of the household of God.” If it sounds revolutionary, it is. It was when Paul of the Bible said it to the early Jesus followers. It is for us know. Yet many Christianists are maintaining the dividing walls, working not for peace but for dominance, not for community but for success. They encourage a corporate greed that believes walls, barriers are useful capitalist practices, so only a few can participate in what is good about this country. Those who lower walls are suspected of being anti-competitive. If we make loans easier for people in trouble, provide good education for all, try to understand the other’s faith perspective, how will we know who the genuinely preeminent are.
What if everyone got the same salary for whatever they loved doing, every child had access to the same education, each person had the right to the same health insurance. If God envisions no barriers, how can we, no, how dare we?
Where is your interest in wall maintenance / destruction these days?