Whether our world is more chaotic and unjust than ever before is a matter for debate. While each new discovery, invention and innovation brings hope they also bring added problems that can make things worse. But this has always been the case, the storyline of human kind is consistent in the drama of existentialist crisis, cataclysmic destruction and competing eschatological passion. The world-views of the power elite dominate.
In all of this it would seem the global power base has shifted to the right, to nationalism with a general abandonment of multilateral values. Although there is an argument to justify the shift, nationalism has never produced world peace and Shalom. At the heart of the matter is the self interest of the individual with an instinct for survival of the fittest, producing might is right and a culture of autocracy.
The erosion of democracy among the super powers and the growing shadow criminality of the politics of business and the business of politics makes for some despair. While the justice system and free media bravely play their role there is concern that democracy as we experience it is not producing justice and development. Many voters in fact, to avoid responsibility in addressing their complex world, prefer to abdicate their voice to a personality cult. The man of the hour full of power fueling fear and hatred gets support and in the flurry of a Tweet in our digital age gets a platform from which to communicate and secure a vote.
But as we reflect on the Gospel and the Kingdom we have intruding into our cynical sensibilities the over arching conversation and dialogue with God. In the timelessness of the incarnation of Christ we have such comfort. While everything is changing nothing changes except the movement of the Spirit deep within our being. What seems apparent is that in order to respond to the world as we find it, we are forced to respond to matters of calling, vocation and purpose. Fueling this great adventure is the embrace of ‘today’. Abandonment of the past through forgiveness and the holding at bay of tomorrow through faith and in so doing we are present to the “now”.
How we do this, of course, is the big puzzle. What has been inspirational for me is the thought that the picture on the puzzle box may indeed predate conception, held within the consciousness of a creator who creates us and lets us discover his creation in our world, in ourselves and in each other.
As we give up creating God and indeed ourselves we are able to find that which we are born to discover: that God is God, that we are created, called and known and that we are loved.
“If I have told you earthly things and you do not believe, how can you believe if I tell you heavenly things”. ESV John 3verse12