Let’s see now. Who can we blame? – why is God punishing us?. It is obvious that when bad things happen, God is very angry and has decided to punish us! The problem is, we have some difficulty in deciding just who is to be the scapegoat this time. Earthquakes in Mexico, Hurricanes and flooding in Texas and Florida: what message is God sending us?
Maybe, just maybe God is angry because we had the effrontery to elect a President who was an African American? May it was because we were actually considering a woman to be president? Maybe because we elected Donald Trump? Maybe it because some of us are conservatives and others liberals and others – who knows? Maybe it is because of approval of Gay Marriage, or Trans-Genders? Maybe it is because the Cubs actually had the gall to win the World Series last year? Maybe it is because we are working to treat Muslims as equals to Christians – or blacks as equal to whites? Once upon a time, we actually elected a Catholic as president and God punished us with the war in Viet Nam.
We know that God rewards the just and the good – and punishes the wicked and evil. We know that if everyone would just send me $1,000.00 as seed money, God will reward you a thousand times over? If you fail, you will receive a just punishment! It is always interesting when someone decides that when bad things happen – God is intervening and venting his anger. It also seems as if God has always been angry – people have been set war for centuries; earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, droughts, fires, economic depressions, poverty, murder and wars have been around since we first walked the earth.
But wait a minute; we have to blame someone else? We can’t accept responsibility for all of this. It is all God’s doing! God is punishing others who don’t obey his rules – and we know just what those rules are. We, in our infinite knowledge can speak for God – and we are God’s chosen ones. We speak from infallible righteousness. We speak for God and God speaks through us! Therefore we have the right and the duty to judge! If we are offended, God is offended. Others need to pay the price – they are our scape-goats that we send out into the desert.
It is wonderful that God brings us chosen few up to the mountain to stand in judgement and recognize that God is always acting through us. That way we don’t have to accept responsibility for our actions or lack of action. We can build for war and pollute our air, our water and our earth; we can divide people into those who are righteous and those who are less worthy and therefore always include ourselves among the worthy. We can stand by while poverty, drought, and war are worshipped and accepted as God’s will and completely forget to read and understand the Gospel, especially those teachings that we would rather ignore. We can always find someone else to blame. That let’s us off the hook.
It is so easy to forget or ignore that Creation is ongoing and that we are part of it. We are given the God-given gift of freedom to choose; to make decisions about life and death and that not making decisions is the same as making them. We choose not to get involved and then feel free to complain and criticize others – to blame them when Shit happens. When I lose my job or my house – it is someone else’s fault. When we lose thousands of young people through wars – is is always someone else’s fault. We have a hard time learning that we are responsible and that there are consequences for every decision; and many of them are unintended – but just as real. We can separate and divide; or we can build, create, make whole, heal and feed or we can destroy. We can bring life or death; it is our decision and our responsibility. We do not have the luxury of hanging our heads down, feeling sorry for ourselves and blaming others when things go wrong. We are connected and are part of life coming to be. Do we blame or do we do something to correct the problems? That is the Question. To be? or not to Be? That is. the question for each of us.