Thursday, July 19, 2012

Free-range farm workers?

Here's a stimulating article about the plight of food-workers, particularly in the fields. Only 13% of food-workers make a living wage. I've been to the fields in Immokalee, FL, and seen the workers waiting in the mornings to be picked up for a day's work, making about $0.32/bucket of tomatoes.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Doing good

"I read in a book that a man called Christ went about doing good. It is very disconcerting to me that I am so easily satisfied with just going about."
Toyohiko Kagawa, Japanese follower of Jesus

How do you define "good"? What would be on your list of "good" things that you do?

I read this quote this morning in Common Prayer, and it strikes me that when you ask most USAmerican believers, the answers probably seem to be couched in terms of personal or societal morality. I "do good" when I don't cheat on my taxes or my spouse, when I don't lose my temper with my kids or my boss, when I vote for the pro-life or pro-democracy candidate, when I give my tithes and offerings to the church...

All of these can truly be good things. 

But the real power of good is not morality, it is impact on the other. Good is ultimately defined in how the life of someone else is changed, not how my life is changed. I start to practice "good" when I love my neighbor as myself.

Can this definition of "good" as the impact on the other change our thinking on morality, on politics, on theology? Does "love your neighbor as yourself" have anything to say about how we treat the unborn, or how we treat their mother? Does it impact the words we use when discuss those who disagree with us? Does it impact laws we pass about the poor, the immigrant, the orphan? Does it change our views on what kinds of goods (weird choice of word for "stuff" don't you think?) we buy, or where we buy them? Does "good" have something to do with governments' choices of sponsoring violence to counteract violence?

Is the sum total of "good" really about my personal morality or about society's morality? Or is it about how my choices affect every other person, and the societal systems in which we all live?

There is no such thing as "good" in a vacuum. You cannot be good alone. Just ask the early desert fathers. Good is all about the other.

May I not be so easily satisfied with "just going about."

Monday, July 09, 2012

Tale of 2 Scientists on CT

Check out this excellent article on 2 scientists, both believers, pursuing God and truth through their craft, even though one is a theistic evolutionist and one a young-earth creationist. We would all do well to heed their thought that the "war" between the 2 camps is doing much more harm than good, and too often reflects the same "demonization" tactics that exists in today's political world. Godly people disagree on this issue, and that's okay. Let us all keep pursuing God and his truth!

Friday, July 06, 2012

Great conversation about the Bible

Wow, I love it when writers better than me articulate my thoughts...there's a great conversation about the Bible going on at Out of Ur and I wanted to link you to it here. It's got two parts...

Part 1

Part 2

Some great humor, but ultimately some good thinking.