Sunday, March 4, 2012
What does it take to bring out your best?
A lot of people on the news are talking about how the recent tornadoes have brought the best out in people. People in small towns are helping strangers in other small towns clean up after twisters destroyed homes. "Tough times have a way of bringing out the best in people." And people whose homes and lives were spared say things such as "There but for the grace of God. . . ." and "The only thing that saved us was Jesus."
Well, I have a couple of problems with all that.
First of all, why do we wait for disasters such as tornadoes to reach out to our neighbors? What about all those individual, private disasters that we may never know about unless we are close enough to ask? Secondly, how dare anyone say, "There but for the grace of God. . . " as if their neighbors who lost everything were not recipients of divine grace. I reckon either we all are, or no one is. Which do you think?
Does God like people whose houses remained intact more than he likes those whose homes were destroyed? Do people who survive do so because they prayed to Jesus louder, more sincerely, or more correctly than those who didn't?
God, who is the whole Universe, doesn't pick favorites in my humble opinion. And that does not make it ok for us to abdicate our care of the planet, nor does it make it ok for us to forget our responsibility to each other, who are after all, part of the planet.
Of course, we need to reach out to each other in times of natural disasters. And we need to reach out to each other daily - blue skies or black. And if having everything we need to exist right now, right here is divine grace, then by my figuring we all have it.