You can see it in their eyes on the subway. You can hear it in their voices as they sing, even when the song is upbeat. You can experience it in the photographs of children. Each, old and young, wealthy and struggling, feel as though they have been left alone; abandoned by friends and family, ignored by those they trust, used and exploited but never touched with compassion and love. It is incredibly sad. Regardless of the circumstances, Divinity did not design us with this in mind!
Some believe free markets and capitalism will solve everything. Sadly, survival of the fittest will not address the needs of the powerless and weak. The idea that individual accountability is solely the determinant of how much of life’s junk rests on you or me is absurd. We can be, and ultimately are, responsible for the hells of our own creation. Yet evil is alive in our communities. People exploit vulnerabilities for their own advantage. Individuals consume scarce resources, including the goodwill of those within reach, to get ahead. Life can and often is extremely unfair.
The solution in every situation relies on individuals taking a stand for themselves and others. When someone is too weak, the strong must stand and defend. When someone has made a mistake, it often takes more than one’s self to move forward. We are part of the process; individually and corporately. Even in our weakness, God calls you and me to make a difference. Even as life consumes us, we can reach out and help. I know we are “a people battered and cowed, shut up in attics and closets, [with] victims licking their wounds, feeling ignored, abandoned. But is anyone out there listening? Is anyone paying attention to what's coming?” (Isaiah 42.22, 23)
I cannot solve every problem yet I can do something about the ones within my reach. I can extend God’s arm of compassion. I can delivery God’s hand of mercy and defend the weak. We can make sure nobody is alone. God is here. We can also be present.
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