Yesterday, at a local Anglican service I heard it said, “The aimless wandering of some of us, effects all of us.” On a recent tv special on AIDS, former president Bill Clinton said, “Because we can do something we must do something.” I am growing increasingly aware that our call and our role in life is not be the stars or the heros that make it to the news or to people magazine, but to be responsible with what we can and must do for our local context. The places where we are as people are the key to the great puzzle of life.
Something odd has happening to the human spirit with the rise and fall of capitalism in the 2oth century. Something odd has and is happening to us all as we are ever one click away from being somewhere else. Something odd and very real is happening when we long to be in place other than where we are because that “pasture” looks more attractive than this one. Only now, we’re not really talking about pastures within walking distance, we are talking about those we might never arrive at or even get to. After all, ifJonny Baker is right, “The journey is the destination.”
For me, the question becomes not should people dream, but what does it mean that we have internalized a dream for things that are too far out of reach and out of sight for us to even to do real life? What does it mean that people have gotten lost in the maze of do-it-yourself-isms and refuse to get out there and participate in community? What does it mean that we’re trying to support and love people in different parts of the world when we can’t even really love those next door? This for me, is more of the hard work of Christianity in the world. That it brings us humus, or near to the earth, and that it calls us to participation at home, in the lives of those closest to us, in the best way we can love with the whole of our lives. If we are doing this, the good news of the kingdom of God will transform, and the goodness plotted by Christ and all those who seek to follow him will change our world through the vehicle of our personal expression in our local communities. Press on dear reader, and love your neighbor, be they friend or foe.