WHAT A WRENCHING YEAR for Christians who follow the news and who believe that we should help make the world a better place.
Yesterday was a tough day, too.
We lost the Rev. Billy Graham.
In addition, many of us listened to teenagers talk about what they experienced in the recent mass murder at their high school in Florida.
How can those kids escape PSTD, posttraumatic stress disorder, shot out of the barrel of a semi-automatic weapon of war?
And if they survive that, how can they escape PSTD shot out of the mouth of politicians?
My heart melted as I listened to those kids talk. They were saying what we grownups should be saying.
As I listened to them, it actually crossed my mind that we grownups might do well to just turn the reins over to the kids now. Because we’ve blown it. And continue to blow it.
The kids look like their hearts are in the right place, while it looks as though our generation of political leaders has no heart at all.
Good, bad, or ugly, we’ve learned to do what it takes to get what we want.
We’ve sold justice to the rich, who can afford the best lawyers.
We’ve cut the safety net for those at greatest risk.
We know nothing of orphans.
As for widows, they can take care of themselves.
That’s exactly the opposite of what we’re supposed to do.
“Learn to do good.
Help the oppressed.
Defend the cause of orphans.
Fight for the rights of widows.” Isaiah 1:17 NLT
A modern equivalent of orphans and widows in Bible times would be anyone who’s powerless to help themselves, and who needs someone to defend them. High school kids facing down an AR-15 semiautomatic rifle come to mind.
So do DACA folks, kids who grew up here after their parents brought them in illegally. We’re going to kick them out? Really?
One thing I’ve learned as I’ve worked my way through paraphrasing more than half the New Testament for the Casual English Bible is this: faith isn’t silent.
“You empty-headed person, how about I teach you something? I’ll prove to you that the faith of a person is useless if the person doesn’t do anything to help others…A body that doesn’t breathe is a corpse. Faith that doesn’t get up and go and do good things is just as dead” (James 2:20, 26 Casual English Bible).
I think Billy Graham would say “Amen.” He would not add, “…and pass the ammunition.”