Friday, November 20, 2015

Appearing to Care

Today’s Gospel Reading: Luke 16:15-18; 17:1-4 - The Lord said to the Jews who came to him, "You are those who justify yourselves before men, but God knows your hearts; for what is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God. The law and the prophets were until John; since then the good news of the kingdom of God is preached, and every one enters it violently. But it is easier for heaven and earth to pass away, than for one dot of the law to become void. Every one who divorces his wife and marries another commits adultery, and he who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery."  And he said to his disciples, "Temptations to sin are sure to come; but woe to him by whom they come! It would be better for him if a millstone were hung round his neck and he were cast into the sea, than that he should cause one of these little ones to sin. Take heed to yourselves; if your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him; and if he sins against you seven times in the day, and turns to you seven times, and says, 'I repent,' you must forgive him."

It struck me this morning when I read the Gospel for today. Especially since the terrorist attack in Paris, it occurs to me so many desire to be SEEN as being compassionate that they will go to extreme ends to display their solidarity through Facebook and other forms of social media. I’ve grown tired of the various meme’s pulling at my Christian heart strings with pictures that show Joseph and Mary being “locked out of America” as refugees; as if CLEARLY one must be the chief hypocrite for even wanting to discuss the question of the recent refugee crisis. We are so preoccupied with APPEARING to care, I wonder how many of us really care in the first place. If we did.....the world would already be different.

So I will remain silent for now on the refugee crisis, not because I don’t have an opinion, but because I’m not sure the current conversation is even a conversation. If you have been a fan of my blog for any time, you know my thoughts about politics and faith, and you know my thoughts about wearing our faith merely as dressing rather than converting our hearts.

I received a text message yesterday from someone who wanted my advice on “how” she should be thinking about the refugee crisis. My response was that it is too deep for a text message. She shared with me that she was conflicted. I said, “You should be.” The problems of our world are real and the only way we will ever truly be able to address them is when we stop worrying about being justified by men, and start worrying about being justified by God.....but let me warn you.....that will mean MUCH more discomfort than merely posting a meme showing Native Americans rejecting the pilgrims because they no longer accept refugees. It will require genuine repentance in your heart and mercy from God.

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