It’s really easy to be down. The world makes it easy. Just observe what is shared. Observe what others are paying attention to. Observe what draws attention. Conflict, death, destruction, separation, power, etc. None of this is new.
I’m reading a book that traces some history and what is amazing is that the people in the 1700’s in America faced the same conflict, fights, and destructive tendencies as we face today. Not much change. Sure, the topic of dispute might be different, but the arguments, the desire to control and to destroy opponents, the scapegoating and the acting out in violence for those that don’t comply, the separating from others – it’s all the same.
Humanity is seems has little desire to grow and learn in order to change and be transformed. We’re much more comfortable that way – we get to lie to ourselves and believe that we are in control.
It’s as if the apple from the Garden of Eden is offered to society in each generation. And we gladly choose thinking that this time it will be different. But it’s not.
We think we need more. We think there is not enough. We claim certain words, but don’t actually understand them, or come up with different definitions for them in order to spin them for our own desires. We aren’t interested in God’s shalom. It would mean giving up too much control. The reality is that we don’t even know what we are rejecting. So we keep searching.
But the answer is right there in front of us and inside of us. Shalom. It’s about wholeness, completeness, and enough. God is enough. We think we are less than enough, so we keep searching. Always unsatisfied. We think that is we have more, then we will be more like God. But that’s what God is about or who God is. That’s the human idea of deity. And this search for more has costly consequences – war, poverty, xenophobia, racism, greed, exploitation, abuse, power, control, and death.
But it doesn’t have to be this way. We are invited to participate in God’s reign. A way of being that is enough – always enough. Maybe we think that it’s too good to be true. Maybe we reject it because we didn’t come up with it. Maybe we define God’s reign as something that looks more like a human empire. Maybe we should just stop all this nonsense. We claim to believe God, to follow God. Yet we continuously reject God. I don’t understand that. I don’t understand how faith is anything other than integrated into one’s life – not some compartment of life that can be put aside or subjugated to other priorities.