These issues that can deeply consume us and acutely divide us also distract us. We have become so preoccupied with ourselves and our own concerns and our own opinions and own own beliefs, that there is no attention left to be given to matters of real importance. Perhaps here in America’s culture of voracious consumerism and individualism people cannot help but lose sight of why it is the definition of humanity to act with justice and concern and love for one another.
I have two goals set for the coming year.
Luckily, neither of the goals was to describe the goals on this blog immediately after the changing of the year!
Never before have I gazed down the barrel of an approaching year and felt any kind of pressure to express who I would like to be if and when I gaze down another approaching barrel. One thing I know is that sometime in the time that we call 2009, a transformation that has been ongoing for literally several years kicked into high gear and, consequently, I’ve been seeing the world and my interaction with in in a completely new light.
Our attempts to represent selfless love and compassion are voided – they become transactional instead of transformational. Instead of being an extension of God showing relentless love in all circumstances, we become a relentless prospector showing love to others when our investments show promising returns for ourselves.
I’ve recently been asked to contribute some posts to the “equitas blog” – equitas is a local non-profit that “provides resources for people groups in developing nations to assist them in becoming sustainable communities.” During this past year, that resourcing has taken the form of providing money for water wells and education. There are some compelling stories on the blog and the equitas website. You’ll also find lots of information on the current projects and ways that you can help.
There is nothing in me that wants to live restrained under the law of the Pharisees or the law of the church. I choose to live free of the guilt of having only paid 8.2% this month and wondering if I need to make up the difference. I choose to find and meet needs.
Redemption gets me every time.
Behind my obviously gruff exterior is a soft-hearted man who would cry at the drop of a hat and its subsequent return to its rightful owner. There is something about redemption and restoration and encouragement that clutches my heart and simply will not let it go before ensuring that my eyes well up and that I have to sniff back tears.