I know. I know. I really stink at this blogging thing. It’s been over two weeks with nothing posted. For those who have been checking in, I sincerely apologize. It’s not that “nothing” has been happening in my life. The exact opposite is true. So much has been happening and I just forget to blog. But Marcia Erickson-the-wise rightly points out that people want to know more of our ministry and ideas, and I’ve got to get some consistency in my “out-loud journaling.”
So… beginning now… I am really truly sincerely and authentically going to try.
Here’s what’s on my mind right now. I was watching the National News one night and they reported on the escalating mayhem in Iraq. The report said that the last two days in Iraq have been the deadliest since the war began. The report spoke about how one group of Muslims went out “after their time of prayer” and massacred another group of Muslims (most of them innocent bystanders). The report showed multitudes of people wailing in agony over loved ones who had been blown apart while others screamed in rage, promising to avenge these deaths in the name of Allah.
I’m stupefied as I watch all this – especially the declarations of vengeance. I don’t recall the idiocy of war ever being played out quite so clearly. I avenge the death of my brother by blowing up your brother. You avenge the death of your brother by blowing up my two daughters. I avenge the death of my two daughters by blowing up your wife and three sons. You avenge the death of your wife and three sons by… and the demonic game of violence goes on and on. The level of delusion, like the level of violence, is utterly mind-boggling. The truth of Jesus’ teaching couldn’t be more obvious: “If you live by the sword, you’ll die by the sword.” How can rational, intelligent people who love their children not see this?
And yet, the insanity going on in Iraq right now is hardly exceptional by historical standards. This particular bloodbath is really just an intensified microcosm of the history of our sad species. If history reveals anything, it’s that violence is self-perpetuating. For each enemy you kill, you recruit five more enemies you need to kill. The cyclical nature of violence is as obvious as the law of gravity, and yet to this day we continue to embrace the demonic illusion that if only we use enough “shock and awe” in our “crusade” to rid the world of evil-doers, we can once and for all make the world a safe place. Despite the fact that it has never once worked, we continue to think that lasting peace can be achieved by violence.
Our undying faith in violence is, I believe, the clearest proof that we are a “fallen” species.
And so the macabre tit-for-tat game goes on and on and on.
The hope of the world lies in some people getting disgusted enough with the butchery to finally decide to take the teachings of Jesus seriously. We’ve had enough cries of vengeance for a couple thousand years. Lets give loving our enemies a try.