For quite some time now I have wondered what all the hating is about in the political discourse.
Why was George Bush hated so much when he was in office. Yeah, he had some folksy ways of expressing himself and he could not pronounce the word nuclear correctly. And for this he was ridiculed even though he is undeniably a very intelligent man. To this day those who hate him say he lied about weapons of mass destruction to get us into a war. The problem is that many other world leaders including President Clinton and foreign heads of state also were convinced that Iraq had weapons of mass destruction. Never mind that weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq and that Iraq had already used some of them on their own people. Those who hated Mr. Bush kept right on hating. Facts were not influential in the discourse.
President Obama is equally hated. There are those who are actively rooting for his failure and our subsequent failure as a nation because they hate what he stands for. It's as if new ideas only have merit if the right person comes up with the idea. When the wrong guy comes up with an idea it is dismissed immediately as dangerous for our country. Who knows if a national health care system will ultimately help the less priviledged in the long run. What I do know is that the present system is helping fewer and fewer people and costing more and more. So why not let a guy who talks a lot about hope and finding a better way have a shot at it? He can't do any worse than the last three or four guys. Oh, I forgot, he's gonna destroy our country - he's a liberal.
I think it is obvious that two major power blocks are vying for control of our country. And I think you would be hard pressed to proove that either one is "Christian".
This blog "Stuffweshouldtalkabout" has been running for a month now and I have a clearer focus on why I started it and what it is for.
1. This is a forum for truth seekers to exchange ideas in the interest of learning from each other the truth about how our world works.
2. How we hold discussions, how we sort through ideas to find the truth - these are as important as our conclusions. For instance, do we know the difference between what we know to be fact and what we have an opinion on? Do we have the honesty in our personal convictions to allow Scripture to say what it says without importing our ideas about what we want it to say? Are we aware of how history has shaped our understanding of Christian theology and even our approach to what truth is?
3. And ultimately this blog exists to ask the question: Are we interested in following Jesus or just talking about following Jesus?
You see, I believe the world is built on power strutures that invite us to join them. Are you conservative or liberal? Are you a capitalist or a communist? Are you heterosexual or homosexual? Are you Christian or Muslim? Are you pro-life or pro-choice? Are you American or anti-American?
Jesus explicitly presents to us a different kingdom, a different set of values, a different power structure. In fact, you might just want to think of him as mister opposite. He constantly refused to join the conversation at a point given him by the power brokers of his day. Instead, choosing to introduce a distinctly unique and often radical other-worldly option.
Do we embrace or destroy sexual behavior we don't agree with? Jesus does neither. He protects the women caught in adultery. He loves her.
Do we ignore and avoid those who mistreat us or do we use our strength to exert some form of violence to stop those who are mistreating us? Jesus does neither. He asks the one who does injury to him if he would like to do it again, mocking the antagonists bad behavior and not allowing it to dictate to him his options for a response.
So I ask you, do the power structures mentioned above (conservative, liberal, captitalist, communist. . .) look like Jesus? If not, why are we so eager to join our support to their causes? Why do we settle for the choices that people who are not in love with Jesus give us? Can you name for me one power structure that existed in Jesus' day that he did not oppose? I see Jesus as a radical subordinate revolutionary. That is, he submitted to the authorities in the world he lived; at the same time offering a better way characterized by love, forgiveness, inclusion, service and sacrifice.
I don't think we are a Christian nation, but I think we could become a nation of Christians.
Just some stuff we should talk about.