Monday, July 29, 2013

Luke 12:13-21

Pentecost +11 - Year C 

When we are out of power we look for shortcuts to get what we consider we are entitled to. We will appeal to an authority figure. We will attempt to fix the matter structurally by shaping the political decision-making process to be on our side.

This is an ancient story that Jesus or you or I could bet will be coming our way. Attempts will be made to triangle us into another person’s dramatic moment. I expect Jesus has anticipated this moment and so was ready for it. We may not be as ready to say to another, “This is between the two of you and so I wish the two of you a wise and compassionate way to resolve the matter. I love you both, so let me know how it turns out.”

This process of appealing to authorities and structures to do our work for us is never a helpful thing. Eventually the very processes we use to get our way will be turned against us. If you live by another’s authority, you will die by another’s authority. If you live by a structural advantage, you will die by that same structure shifted against you.

There seems to be no way to take advantage without being taken advantage of in another context. About all that is available is to be generous with life. This value will guide the rest of one’s attention.

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