Dec 15, 2010

Awareness

I doubt if I’m the only one who’s noticed that evil seems to be expanding exponentially around the planet. On every hand the base things are rising up, from rampant drug use, to the proliferation of pornography, to political corruption, to cultural and moral decay. On and on the list goes. Add to that the reality of an anemic Church and the diminishing ability of the family unit to pass on good values and the picture of our near future seems bleak, indeed. In the face of such a wayward world, it would really help if someone would simply tell us what we can do to better the situation.

Actually someone has; and the answer is probably simpler than most believe. It lies in a concept that Jesus gave us. He said this, "You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lamp stand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven."

This is the simple task of the Church in these challenging times. It is to give light, to raise the world’s awareness of goodness and truth. It is to oppose the darkness by two simple means: precept and example.

It is our job, first of all, to simply tell the world, to confront evil by merely using enlightened conversation. In these times when the darkness is so ascendant we must only speak out. The simple task is to raise the world’s awareness of true goodness and God’s truth. So, we preach. We teach. We converse with the group. We e-mail. We Twitter. We Facebook. We argue. We confront. We contend for the faith. We intellectually network God’s truth in every possible way at every opportunity. We shine the light, we make the people around us aware by our voice.

Secondly, we oppose the darkness by living the light. We raise the world’s awareness of God’s truth by allowing them to see what truth and goodness looks like when it has skin on. It is our example, our every day, ordinary existence in Christ, that must also cause our world to take note, to pay attention, to become aware and enlightened as to the true God and His intentions in this world.

Now obviously, most of the world knows nothing, nor will they likely ever know anything, of my personal existence. I will almost certainly perish in obscurity, like most ordinary people. But, if we do this thing right, not before we have raised our voice to bring awareness in our own circle of influence: our family, our friends, our acquaintances and our coworkers etc., and not before we have lived our lives before our own community in a way that they might see, and in seeing, glorify our Father in Heaven.

Indeed, most of us are not capable of opposing evil on a world scale. But we can certainly oppose it on a personal scale by simply raising the awareness level of those in our circle. And that is all we really have to do to defeat evil on the larger scale. Our lights may be relatively small, individually; but if we let them all shine, the darkness will be dissipated.

So, what do we do in this time when evil is so ascendant. We simply do what Jesus said. We refuse to go unnoticed and unheard. Rather, we speak to the darkness with our voice and with our example. We become to those immediately around us the means of an enlarged and godly awareness. We become to them, the light of God. We enable them, by these simple means: our voice and our daily lives - well lived. By this entirely doable thing, we can enable some to see through and beyond the stupidity of the darkness.