When I read of all of the problems and wars in the world today, I feel as if I am reading another chapter of the Dark Night of the Soul. Everywhere there are problems and unrest. I feel like running off to the desert to live the life of the Christian outcasts of the second and third centuries. Living a secluded life of prayer and tending to the earth looks very inviting some days. But God beckons, “Follow me. You will see greater things than these.”
God opens my heart to a vision greater than anyone can imagine. Hope is what I view; hope is what I feel. God’s promise of life and freedom is for the asking. The lighted path of Jesus is ready for our tentative baby steps. We must tread cautiously at first until we find our way, for we are His children and as the Bible promises, “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:28).”
I am too proud of a man; this is the cross I bear. I cannot cry when confronted by the sins of society. I cry when a family member dies. I know why, but I believe that he or she is entering a much better world than we experience now. By passing from this life into the next, we enter a kingdom closer to God and we flourish. But I cannot cry at the results of our covetous society. I see a child denied healthcare because his family lacks insurance and are too poor to pay the exorbitant price of healing. (Hint: Jesus did not charge to heal). I also see the family on the corner of a busy intersect begging for a few pennies to buy food for the children. Chances are the family is black or immigrants; and our society is too enamored with the accumulation of wealth to pay a livable wage. No one can survive on only $11.00 per hour (the minimum wage). I cannot cry when I see these left-behind children of God. I get angry! I condemn our political leaders because they give all to big business, not the citizenry. DV. Millar reminds us: “When we see our neighbors cold, hungry, and suffering, we are taught not to turn a blind eye to that suffering, but to make a difference.”
No matter where we hear Jesus; no matter where we meet God, God’s promise of life and liberty is for all God’s children. Our conversations must reflect His promise of Love and eternal Life. Jesus brought God’s light for all mankind, not just a select few in Israel. He continues to teach and bring us God’s ever-healing light. Love of God always lead to love for our all humanity, not just our political and business leaders.
Individually we lack the power to change the minds of people who think that this is acceptable for our society. However, together we can try to convince those in power that suppression of the poor is not the answer, is not the answer to God’s wishes for mankind. It is not in concert with the lessons taught to us by Jesus.
Knowing this, I open my heart to God who leads me to how I can work to help those who are suppressed by those who covet more material profits and to bring this message to others through my everyday activities and contacts.
God shows me how I can be a better vision of what I think I am, showing me that the plans I have made for myself can change. This led me into the world of teaching at age 51.
We know that it is God’s plan for His creation that is important, and this leads me from being negative about what I do and how I treat others.
©Russell Kendall Carter
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