March 4, 2013

Luke 13:4 Or those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem?

Last weekend in the town next to ours a house blew up because of a gas leak. Yes, really blew up, with just rubble where the house used to be. Miraculously, no one was killed though two people were injured rather badly. Because it happened on a Saturday it was top story on the local newscasts. By Monday it was old news though and those who were not directly affected had moved on to something else. Some Eastern religions believe in karma. The Wikipedia article explains, “Many Western cultures have notions similar to karma, as demonstrated in the phrase what goes around comes around.” We like to think that everybody ends up getting what they deserve- at least what we think they deserve. We have a kid that grew up in our town; I hear he is a real nice man (not really a kid anymore). He just signed a contract to play football for the next six years and the Baltimore Ravens will pay him $120 million. In the past I have heard lots of people say how ridiculous it is that some athletes make so much money just to play a game. I haven’t heard one such comment from the locals about Joe. It all seems so different when we actually know the person involved, whether it’s in tragedy or good fortune. Does God have some cosmic list that ranks how bad or less bad people have been and dispenses the goodness of life according to that? Jesus says no. He puts us all in the same category. He doesn’t try to explain why some seem to get more good things or bad things than others. He just asks us all to trust in him for our life in the present and in the time to come. If we get what we deserve… well, what would that be? If we have gotten and continue to get grace, well… maybe we should just concentrate on passing it along. How might you do that this week?

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