Todayâ€™s Gospel dealt with the sower and the grain. Much of the seed that was sown did not come to full maturity. The rocks, the shallow soil, or the snares of daily cares and anxieties kept the seed from taking root. Jesus wants the seed to fall on rich soil. He wants us to accept his word fully and without qualification. How often we fall short individually and collectively.
As I pondered this reading, my mind flashed back to the Holocaust Museumâ€™s report this week on the Nazi officials at Auschwitzâ€”drinking, cavorting and enjoying life while a few feet a way they were gassing innocent people. The ultimate rocky soil. The ultimate evil. You can view the picture album online at http://www.ushmm.org/research/collections/highlights/auschwitz/.
When he was being interviewed at Nuremberg, GÃ¶ring said, â€œThe people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is tell them that they are being attacked and denounce the pacifists for a lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same way in any country.â€
Why does what GÃ¶ring says ring so true today. Because it what has been happening to us since 9/11! If we donâ€™t get the terrorists over there, they will get us here. If you protest this immoral, preemptive war you are â€œnot supporting the troops.â€
What do the new pictures from Auschwitz have to do with GÃ¶ringâ€™s warning? Everything! Many Americans are lounging around and enjoying life while countless thousands suffer and are being killed in the name of democracy and freedom. For many Christians life goes on. It does not get much better. Most of us have everything we want and need and, if we donâ€™t, we can go get it at Walmart. We are content to let THEM protect us from terrorism so we can continue to support our Imperial Comfort Syndrome by consuming inordinate amounts of the earthâ€™s resources.
The few and the brave who stand over against empire are unpatriotic and un-American. When did acting like Jesus and following the path of nonviolence become un-American? After all we purport to be a Christian nation.
Can we lounge around while
â€¢ The global economy leaves 850 million people suffering from hunger and 3 billion people living in poverty (less than two dollars per day)
â€¢ The poor of the worldâ€”about 80% 0f mankindâ€”live on 15% of the worldâ€™s total GNP
â€¢ The significant resources that have been invested in our agriculture and food systems only create the nonsustainable mass production of low quality junk food that pollutes both our bodies and our environment resulting in topsoil degradation of a territory as large as India (21% of the worldâ€™s present arable land).
â€¢ We spend enormous resources on health care systems which tinker with symptoms and are not able to address the root causes of health and sickness
â€¢ We pour considerable amounts into our educational system and yet we have not developed schools which develop peopleâ€™s innate capacity to sense and shape their future
â€¢ In spite of considerable alarming scientific and experiential evidence for an accelerated climate change we continue to operate as if nothing is happening
â€¢ More than half the worldâ€™s children today suffer conditions of deprivation such as poverty, war, and HIV/AIDS. As a result, 40,000 children die of preventable diseases each day (This and previous bullets from Otto Scharmer, Theory U: Leading from the Future as It Emerges.)
â€¢ We have spent 758.1 billion on the war on terror and yet we have not addressed the root causes of terrorism (Source: http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/natsec/RL33110.pdf retrieved 9/18/07.
It is time for us to let the Word of nonviolence falls on rich soil. Let us not be swayed by government induced fear. After all, our ONLY security is in Christ Jesus, the nonviolent Lamb of God. He was slain to show us the Way. Come, Lord Jesus!