In recent weeks there has been an abundance of outrage directed at British Petroleum, Halliburton, the Obama administration, and God knows who else, for the oil drilling disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. And I’m right in there with my righteous indignation. The mess created has and will continue to dole out destruction to wildlife, livelihood, and environmental integrity for years to come. As I drive my daily commute of 15 miles one way from SW Portland to NE Portland, I begin to get a little queezy stomach that sometimes happens when I realize I may be part of the problem more than part of the solution.
Evil – Wikipedia contributors define it as “the violation of the most basic moral or ethical standards prescribed by a society, philosophy, or religion.” Problem is that our Western society has set “basic moral and ethical standards” that look more like “I want it all, and I want it now!” (market drivers) more than “God spoke: “Let us make human beings in our image, make them reflecting our nature so they can be responsible for the fish in the sea, the birds in the air,…” (Creation story, Genesis 1, The Message).
33“Make a tree good and its fruit will be good, or make a tree bad and its fruit will be bad, for a tree is recognized by its fruit. 34You brood of vipers, how can you who are evil say anything good? … 35The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.” (Matthew 12:233-35)
I’m comfortable enough being called a snake. When Jesus calls you something, what are you going to do? All humanity, each and every one of us, is a mess of jumbled up good/bad trees. Our redeeming factor, of course, is that of grace and a second chance at a right relationship… we have choice.
So I’m riding the bus, today. And waiting for this blasted rain to stop so I can get on with biking to work. (OK, I am a confirmed fair-weather rider). Part of the solution means helping to form society’s basic moral and ethical standards.
“It’s me, it’s me, it’s me O Lord, standin’ in the need of prayer.”
Peace with Justice – Bill