Wednesday, October 29, 2014


Tuesday evening, for the most part, was consumed with this old man seated at the computer helping his granddaughter piece together a three-page report on John Steinbeck. His name is familiar to me only because of having the Navy having stationed me in Monterey, California twice and that being the area where the author lived in his youth. His books were not something a young sailor was into at the time, but fifty years later I find it interesting to learn that much of what he wrote came forth out of a heart for the underdog, a belief that the “upper crust” owed the “lower class” more than just meager wages. For him, Socialism and Communism seemed better alternatives to Capitalism; and religion (Christianity in particular) had failed to live that which it preached. God wasn’t rejected, only determined to be beyond one’s ability to comprehend. The author, in spite of a compassion for others, was agnostic in his theology. In my “Parables of Peanuts” book there is a cartoon where Linus is kneeling on the ground talking to Charlie Brown’s dog. “Yknow what?” he asks Snoopy, “I don’t understand people! No matter how hard I try, I just don’t get them!” As he walks away, man’s best friend ponders what was said and thinks to himself: “I know just how he feels. I gave up trying to understand people long ago and now I just let them try to understand me.” Funny; and some truth there, I suppose, but, in Christ, walking away from the enigma isn’t the answer. There is, after all, One who understands all of us; and if we can approach the mind of Christ, if once “behind the veil” we are willing to examine ourselves through His eyes, however infrequently we get there and however temporary the encounter be, somehow it helps, in looking at the other person, to see ourselves stumbling down the same road. Politics, in any form, is just man kidding himself. Theology, in any manner we develop it void of His reality correcting us as we go, putrefies and stinks in its witness. If America survives, it will only be through revival, not in the sense of some thumped-out demand by the Church for the world to repent, but via a humble acknowledgement that we, the Body, have failed and come short……..

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