CONTEMPLATING THE CARES AND THE CONCERNS OF OTHERS AT CHRISTMAS

charityThinking is a serpentine process. As our days pass from one moment to the next, our growth seems serendipitous. In truth our Creator shepherds us, giving us much contemplate. After all, what is it we gain with a long life. Is it not a multitude of sorrows and joys, hardships and blessings, pains and pleasures…..? Isn’t that what we call experience? Isn’t wisdom turning to our Creator and asking for His help, praying, hoping to make sense of it all?

Serendipity.  So it is that when I commented on In Defense of Sony (insanitybytes2.wordpress.com), I found myself in an unexpected discussion with  Paul.  observed that Sony Pictures movie, The Interview, was a sign of our nation’s irresponsibility. Here is an excerpt from his first comment.

Put that together and the outcome was eminently predictable. And seldom does the US consider the cares or beliefs of others in determining its actions. i could make a list that would scare you of deliberate actions the US has taken over the years against vulnerable nations that literally lead to the deaths of millions, simply because they could. As a short example, back a few decades ago, when the US was shamelessly pushing free market (before their own investment houses and auto makers collapsed and were propped up by the gov’t) they controlled(and still do) the World bank (which is fine because they also fund the majority of the WB), they disallowed loans or help to many small poor African countries who were subsidizing their farmers. In order to get help some of those countries discontinued the subsidy and as a result starvation ruled – in the name of “free market”. The list goes on and on about such atrocities. (from here)

Given what He is doing to the people of North Korea, I wonder how anyone thinks that Sony could insult the Dear Leader. What could be worst than the truth? Nevertheless, started an interesting debate. Here in response to this comment, is where I think  best summarized his position.

Here is my problem Tom, although each and every one of your points is valid, taken together they show a direction, or a bigger picture that, for me, is a problem. Consistently failing to take into consideration the care and concerns of others is a long-term losing battle. America, as strong and powerful as it is, is only about 375 million people in a world of over 7 billion. There are 6.625 billion others here in this planet and if they are not taken into consideration, it will cause problems. (from here)

There are several practical problems with the issue  raises.

  • There are over seven billion people in the world. Our leaders are just people. Our leaders have no more wisdom than the rest of us. They don’t have the capacity to satisfy conflicting cares and concerns of Americans. Except for the outrageous promises they make, we have no reason whatsoever to believe they can resolve the conflicting cares and concerns of all the people in the world.
  • We elect our leaders to serve us. The rest of the world doesn’t get a vote our elections. Until they pay taxes to the U.S. Government too, they are also not entitled to a vote.
  • Because our cares and concerns are endless, satisfying the cares and concerns of others is not an appropriate mission for government. In addition to lacking the wisdom, we don’t have the resources to satisfy the cares and concerns of the entire world.

So how should our government respond to the cares and concerns of others? Is there an appropriate response? Perhaps, but keep in mind that there is nothing inherently good about the cares and concerns of others.  As human beings we all have the capacity to be selfish and even evil.

Check out Flawed Women (insanitybytes2.wordpress.com). Here the focus is on the potential for evil in women, but that’s just because most of us already concede the potential for evil in men. As Fear of the Lord (insanitybytes2.wordpress.com) illustrates, we don’t enter this world knowing how to love others. First, someone has to choose love us and show us what it means to love — help us to understand why it is such a precious gift to be loved.

What should we do? Speaking Things into Existence (insanitybytes2.wordpress.com) contemplates the power of the mind. Each of us can turn to our Creator and imitate Him. Through our own individual lives, we can seek to speak His Kingdom into existence.

And what Kingdom is that? Isaiah spoke of it. Today this is what Alistair Begg spoke about on his radio broadcast.

Isaiah 9:1-7 Good News Translation (GNT)

The Future King

 The land of the tribes of Zebulun and Naphtali was once disgraced, but the future will bring honor to this region, from the Mediterranean eastward to the land on the other side of the Jordan, and even to Galilee itself, where the foreigners live.

The people who walked in darkness
    have seen a great light.
They lived in a land of shadows,
    but now light is shining on them.
You have given them great joy, Lord;
    you have made them happy.
They rejoice in what you have done,
    as people rejoice when they harvest grain
    or when they divide captured wealth.
For you have broken the yoke that burdened them
    and the rod that beat their shoulders.
You have defeated the nation
    that oppressed and exploited your people,
    just as you defeated the army of Midian long ago.
The boots of the invading army
    and all their bloodstained clothing
    will be destroyed by fire.
A child is born to us!
    A son is given to us!
    And he will be our ruler.
He will be called, “Wonderful Counselor,”
    “Mighty God,” “Eternal Father,”
    “Prince of Peace.”
His royal power will continue to grow;
    his kingdom will always be at peace.
He will rule as King David’s successor,
    basing his power on right and justice,
    from now until the end of time.
The Lord Almighty is determined to do all this.

The power of a bag of gold or hundred dollar bills amounts to little. For only a small time can we assuage the cares and concerns of others with empty words and dollar bills. Yet we do have the capacity to try love our neighbors as Jesus loved us, and such love can change the world.

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