A person can witness it all around them – at least in America, anyway.
It is disturbing.
There seems to be a steady decline in America in, well – what would you call it?
A few things might fit in this category, but here is one example.
It goes something like this:
People try to take the easy way out in life. Sometimes minimalism, and sometimes things like stealing, substance abuse, violence, lack of action, etc.
When the effects take hold – loss of a job, incarceration, lost partner, financial disaster – they blame things on other people.
This wouldn’t be too bad in itself.
But guess what?
Then they take out their frustrations on other people around them. It might be a negative attitude, not pulling their weight in the household, or trying to “get back” at society in general.
While the author is no expert, this “getting back” seems to be one differentiating characteristic between those who are happy and successful and those who don’t.
Those who spend a lot of time figuring out how to “get back” end up causing more and more problems – for themselves and for the people around them. Some people take a lot of their time in life doing this, channeling energy into something negative.
Have you witnessed this in your life?
By “get back” it might mean doing something little to make another’s life more difficult, physical or verbal abuse, not helping when you could, not doing what you are supposed to, etc.
And the little things add up to larger things.
But here is another observation:
Those in more responsible positions (i.e. Vice President) tend to focus more of their time on solutions to problems. Not in asking why things are like they are and asking why they are unjust; but in searching for ways to make them better.
It is little things like these – when done collectively across a nation – that can make a difference in its’ standing and position in the world. But there are things you can do.
What Can You Do?
When faced with a decision in life, a simple response is to follow what the Bible directs.
Perhaps that is why the Bible, in all its’ wisdom, talks about things like “turn the other cheek.” What the Bible prescribes for the dilemma is anything but “getting back.”
How is this for advice? Matthew 5:40,
“If anyone wants to take your shirt, let him have your coat also.”
God wants you to have some of his peace, and not just to get back at another person.
He wants to help and you,” and give you the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension” (Philippians 4:7).
This example in the Gospel of Matthew might not be ordinary, but it is to make a point.
The Vice Presidents mentioned above get a glimpse of this peace when they focus elsewhere, other than at getting back.
No wonder Jesus said “the Kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:21).
But this is not what is usually witnessed in modern American culture.
America, as a whole, is doomed. Or so it seems.
Without using the Word of God, that is.
A nation cannot sustain being a superpower for the long term under these conditions. While this alone might not end America’s reign as a superpower, little things add up over time. It ripples through life into the prosperity of a nation.
As freedoms in the United States should bring talent from around the world to be productive, the freedoms also allow some to make poor choices. This is especially true with the rise of single parent families, and some of these people drag down others with them.
It is true in America, but not limited to America.
Jesus instructed humans to “love thy neighbor.” And, when Jesus gave instructions, it wasn’t as a tyrant rule-maker, but as someone helping you for your benefit.
(And this post didn’t even mention Donald Trump)
What do you think?