A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life

A Weblog Dedicated to the Discussion of the Christian Faith and 21st Century Life
I do not seek to understand that I may believe, but I believe in order to understand. For this also I believe, –that unless I believed, I should not understand.-- St. Anselm of Canterbury (1033-1109)

Friday, June 15, 2012

Humanity Is Not What It's Cracked Up to Be

Mark Twain noted that in Genesis God created humanity near the end of his work week when God was already tired, an obvious reference to human frailties and foibles. There is certainly plenty of evidence all around us of human imperfections and we don't even have to look outside ourselves to note our shortcomings. Each of us carries our sin in our souls.

It is impossible to turn on the television or the radio or surf the Internet to hear, watch, and read of the incessant bad news in the midst of our difficult economic times. We hear of greed and selfishness and materialism and continual argument on just what to do in the midst of the mess. These things should not be ignored, of course. It is a reminder to us that human beings are not what they are cracked up to be.

One of the unfortunate things that gets lost in the midst of all the bad news is the good news of the countless people stepping forward in big and small ways to help others. There are business owners who are taking less personal salary so that they do not have to lay off some of their work force. There are employees who have voluntarily taken a decrease in salary so that a co-worker can remain on the job. Some individuals have joined together in order to save someone from losing her or his house to foreclosure. Others have joined together to pay for the health insurance of a friend. In spite of less giving and shortfall in their budgets, churches are still giving to missions locally and globally. There are plenty of examples of human beings at their worst; but if we are willing to look, we can also find countless examples of women and men at their best.

Yes, humanity isn't what's it's cracked up to be. The image of God in us may be warped, but we are still in God's image nonetheless. It is in the midst of bad times, human beings can display their worst, to be sure, but it also provides moments when individuals rise above their foibles and frailties to display the image of God in this world.

Thanks be to God for that!

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