Daily Thoughts, November 14, 2004
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Response

During my lifetime there have been several moments where one could see the worst of human history under construction.  Cambodia, Balkans, and now Sudan all reflect nightmares.  Bluntly put, this is human genocide.  People are systematically, with clear intent and purpose, destroying the framework of people’s lives.  More to the point, they are methodically slaughtering human beings.  The first time I found myself in the back of the human family watching others do something reprehensible I found myself angry, frustration, and confused.  Others seem to be ambivalent about the problem.  Even those who cared passionately about the subject were caught up in educating others instead of dealing with the problem.
 
Decades have passed since that time.  When we talk about Cambodia the facts of death and destroyed generations are widely accepted.  What doesn’t appear to be part of the conversation is the family’s learning from the pain of yesterday’s lessons.  In fact denial and the inability to even talk about our collective lack of response seems to be the day’s norm.
 
If you were to take a journey forward in time to the Sudan, I wonder what we will find.  Are we repeating our response to Cambodia with the added guilt because we now have more complete knowledge of the problem?  Is our response of rhetoric enough?
 
Jesus talked about personally being unconditionally committed to a cause.  Because of this commitment the blind could see, those dead lived again, and those with no hope received hope.  Yet his very words of commitment “caused another split in the Jewish ranks.  A lot of them were saying, ‘He's crazy, a maniac—out of his head completely.  Why bother listening to him?’  But others weren't so sure: ‘These aren't the words of a crazy man.  Can a ‘maniac’ open blind eyes?’”  (John 10.19-21) 
 
I wonder; what will my response be today to those in need of hope, mercy, or acceptance?  Will I stand on the sidelines and observe or will I step in and risk all?  People, far away and close by, are in need.  My next step is…

November 13, 2004
November 15, 2004