“YOU CAN DO SOMETHING. You can get on a path of wisdom and walk it. … “Build your house on a rock,” as Jesus urges us. … You may ask what good all that will do in the face of a task as massive as repairing creation? … I cannot offer an answer that proves the human venture on this planet will be successful in the long run. Neither did Jesus. But he encouraged his disciples not to lose heart, to trust that God’s desire for the world will triumph in the end.”
– Robert Corin Morris, Provocative Grace: The Challenge in Jesus’ Words, (via Upper Room Daily Reflections)
There are many who are expert in giving us a picture of what’s wrong with the world – specialists in giving diagnosis. And I noticed even for common people like us, the energy generated while trying to explain what we see as off track seems more exciting than actually doing something about it.
We give ourselves excuses and rationalize our way out of the hard work of thinking through concrete plans to make some change. Of course, we still need some imagination for possibilities. Tragically, we are always tempted to give up hope and look for greener pastures. Even if we’re already on the road to so-called “a better place”, aren’t we still called to leave behind something—or have we even lost the heart to do that little bit?
I had the chance to visit the Malaysian Parliament building a couple of weeks ago. What to me for many years was distant suddenly became close. Being in that environment made me wonder about many things related to the socio-political scenario in our country. I recall how often I do not view the “somethings” I do in any relation to what’s happening there. But that kind of mindset is a defeatist mindset. We have lost the battle even before taking any first step.
Getting ready to vote in an election is one step in doing something. Reading reflectively and critically the news is another step. Intelligently engaging in conversation on matters which concern all is one more step. Informing my intercession with the struggles and sufferings of the marginalized keeps my spirituality on earth. Discussing the dangers of racist tendencies from our background while parenting adds to the list. Asking my son Gareth how his friendship with his Malay friend at school is enriches our father and son time. Attending forums and meeting fellow concerned Malaysians multiplies what may have started as mere thoughts.
The list goes on and on.
All little “do somethings” is part of the bigger puzzle and hopefully a chain reaction of hopeful change that’s so needed in a time where empty promises are in the air.
I’m meeting up with some special people tomorrow night. And then another group on Friday night. Sunday will be another important gathering. I desire to see all of us “doing something”—I know we are all trying.
it’s good to know we are not trying alone. And better still, usually after these meetings which include spiritual direction, mutual sharing, planning for action, and communal worship, I find myself connecting back to the One who writes the final chapter of the world. Thanks for including us in the story thus far.