How to Live in a Disturbing World

The world has always been disturbing.  There has always been cruelty and greed.  There has always been abuse and hatefulness.

But now it feels heavier in a nation that has called itself #1 for a long time.

The truth is that we have rampant addiction crossing every economic and educational level among our young adults.  School principals and teachers serve students overwhelmed with everything from addicted parents (listen to this) to undocumented parents to neglectful parents to demanding parents who will accept nothing less than an Ivy League acceptance letter.

In every community there is food insecurity (I’m even talking about “the best suburbs.”) Young adults are crushed by college debt.  And middle-aged adults wonder how they will live into their 70s and 80s without pensions or enough savings to cover the medical costs that come with aging.

Our nation is led by (mostly white) men who embarrass us.

How do we live in a disturbing world? 

We start in our own homes and neighborhoods.  We teach our children to respect all people – even those who seem foreign to us in their behavior or their appearance.  We speak up when we hear people disrespect other human beings.  We make our children proud by defending the weak.  And we reward them with praise when they defend the weak.

We honor doing the right thing.  We learn from people we do not understand.  We talk with each other.  We are real with each other.

This is who the Church is called to be in these days.  We can no longer be a social club, a service organization, or a sentimental fellowship.

We exist to transform the world for good in the name of Jesus.  We are called to live in the image of Christ – which is no small thing.  It sometimes gets people killed.

On most days the best we can do might be to remember that we and those around us – even the cranky ones – have a value that no one can take away.

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