Living as Apprentices
“People do not want to acknowledge or face up to the reality of a crucified world, and even less do we want to ask ourselves what is our share of responsibility for such a world. The world of poverty truly is the great unknown. It is surprising that the First World can know so much and yet ignore what is fundamental about the world in which we live. It is frustrating, because the problem is not a lack of means by which to learn the truth. We have enough knowledge to place a man on the moon or on Mars, but we sometimes do not even know how many human beings share this planet, much less how many of them die every year from hunger.” By Jon Sobrino in The Principle of Mercy
I love this quote but I have to disagree with one phrase. It is not “surprising” to me that those of us who hog a disproportionate share of the world’s resources try to ignore the fundamental truths about the rest of the planet. The truth we all need to face is our cruel belief that it is our right to live in the “kingdom of me.” Especially those of us who claim to follow Christ.
First we need to acknowledge that we live in that kingdom. Secondly, we have to recognize that the spending our lives assuring that we have everything we want and whining when we don’t is totally contrary to everything Jesus preached and lived. Third, we have to accept that, like Jesus, we are called to share in the pain and the suffering all around us, not build little islands of security. Finally, we have to get off our thrones and beg God to reveal our particular “calling” – the way in which we are best suited to meet the needs of another. And then we must obey.
It starts with me. And then with you. Do you see why we avoid facing up to the truth of the crucified world?