Friday, March 26, 2010

I don't know the answer...

There are cultures where answering "I don't know" is considered the epitome of rudeness. Some consider admitting a lack of knowledge an unacceptable blow to their pride. But, when my kids ask me a question and I don't know the answer, I admit my ignorance. I also offer to help them find the answer.

Pondering questions and finding answers is something I enjoy. Nothing like doing research to jump start my brain and get the synapses firing.

But there are some questions and issue which don't have a simple answer. The issues are complex and the opinions...well, they're all over the map.

I don't enjoy discussing politics because I prefer to avoid confrontation. I consider myself a moderate. I try to look at the different sides, weigh pros and cons, and think things through. I like to research the issues and find the biases. (I have yet to find a media source that doesn't have bias...when I was taking journalism classes in college, bias was supposed to be a no no but things have apparently changed. ;) )

Because I really do try to be informed and think about things, it makes me a little nuts when people say something to the effect of...if you disagree with me, you're obviously not thinking. I am not quite sure what makes the person with the opposing viewpoint believe that they have better cognitive skills than I do, but I assure you, I am capable of fairly complex, rational thought.

I do not claim to have answers to the ills of the world. But I do know this day and is unconscionable to me that people go hungry and cannot afford adequate medical care. I do believe that people should be contributing members of society, that hard work should lead to success and that people should be able to keep what they earn. But it's not always that simple..ethical practices aren't always rewarded and life isn't always fair. Sometimes bad things happen to good people (and good things happen to people who maybe aren't so good.)

My mother used to shake her head and tell me "You can't save the world." But I know that my mother was prone to random acts of kindness and generosity toward strangers. (I've got some good stories. :) ) I think that's why I feel like need should be addressed and it's not just about being "deserving" or whether "I" got through it so you should do it's about compassion and generosity and hospitality.

There are plenty of Biblical examples for reaching out...Matthew 22:37 NIV "Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and all your mind.' 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' 40 All the Law and Prophets hang on these two commandments." Matthew 25:40 NIV "I tell you the truth, whatever you did for the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me."

So no, I do not know the answer to the ills of the world. I don't know the best way to fix the health care crisis, or how to feed all of the hungry or end poverty. But I do believe we are called to care for our neighbor, whether or not we deem them worthy.


No comments:

Post a Comment