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Sunday, June 7, 2015

The Solidity of a Present Reality

Take 30 seconds to reflect on how 4:17 is true of you. What situation comes to mind? (Serendipity Bible Fourth Edition, page 1686).

James 4:13-17 New International Version (NIV)

Boasting About Tomorrow
Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogant schemes. All such boasting is evil. If anyone, then, knows the good they ought to do and doesn’t do it, it is sin for them.

We are entering what promises to be an intense political season. One thing is for certain. It will be characterized by much boasting of what will be done "when I am president."  How often do we stop to consider that such boasting is sin?  While sometimes the enunciation of ultimate goals (rather than seemingly "harder" promises and oaths) can sound like glittering generalities, an affirmation of values is paradoxically the most humble and realistic thing that we can do. Today I heard the eulogy by Barack Obama for Joe Biden, the son of the vice president. The key thing that Pres. Obama did was to identify the essence of the United States in terms of empathy and compassion--values inherent in the Bill of Rights and the Golden rule and which exemplify America at its best.  If I were to affirm these values here, it wouldn't amount to much for I have not been in the rough and tumble political arena. But coming from someone who wears those scars while reflecting on the life of a man dedicated to those values,  I was touched by the solidity of a present reality.

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