I've been really sad lately. About the state of the world.
This is what I majored in so long ago in college. The world. Emphasis on the people of the world.
I was super upset today by a facebook "friend" who commented on an article I posted lauding the governor for being accepting of Syrian refugees. This person said some very disappointing things to the effect that Americans' comfort and safety is more important than anyone else's. This person is a professed Christian, so I gently brought up some things I know about the Bible (I should know a few things after 16 years of Christian education.) I just don't understand how anyone who professes to follow Christ can have so much hatred and xenophobia. How someone can take some warped sense of selfish nationalistic pride to justify turning away anyone in need. How so many people find it so easy to see everything in black and white. Us and them. Two choices: one bad, one good. It's never that simple. Everything is a shade of gray. To think otherwise is to play into the media; is to begin to think as the terrorist do.
Needless to say this person unfriended me. Saved me the trouble. Too bad I have to occasionally see her at work.
I am not a Christian anymore for a variety of reasons, but one is this horrible hypocrisy I find in many Christians. What I learned of Jesus and the gospels was love. Love your neighbor. Love your enemy. Love those who persecute you. Care for the hungry, naked, imprisoned, sick, strangers (Matthew 25:35-40.) I also very much remember learning and trying to practice another key point: faith is nothing without action (James 2:14-17). It's not enough to simply say you are a Christian. You absolutely must back that up with actions. Truly following in the footsteps.
Anyhow, I realized that I also need to put action to my words, Christian or not. I once was active in the world. I volunteered in a variety of ways to help however I could. But that has lapsed and I feel bad about it. I'm going to find a place to volunteer and/or a job that really fulfills me in this way. As I reread that, it sounds super selfish, which is perhaps why my volunteering had lapsed to begin with. It's a struggle. But I still feel the need to be useful, selfish or not.
Yes, I'm a bleeding-heart liberal as my neo-con professor would dub me. And I'm totally okay with that.