Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Jeremiah 31:27-34

Pentecost +22 — Year C


While it sounds like a good thing to be responsible for one’s own actions and consequences therefrom, there is a significant loss of responsibility for the common good of the community. Yes, it can be posited that what is best for each is for the best for all to take place. However, to break a dynamic tension between an individual and their community predictably opens several doors to dysfunction for both an individual and their larger context.

Foremost among the difficulties is a lack of a feedback loop which allows folks to plausibly deny their actions carry any sin for they are thick with G*D.

It would be interesting to have a conversation about covenants. It won’t be long before it is recognized that we each have multiple covenants. The same is true for groups as small as friends and as large as one multi-national group against another multi-national group. Where these covenants rub up against one another there is a weakening of integrity. Some of us have more weak spots than others, but the number is basically immaterial. One is sufficient to cause trouble for all.

It is helpful to remember these words in their context and to remember that we have our own current context where we periodically need to remember to engage the other side of whichever individual/communal pendulum swing we are on at the moment.

It won’t be long after Jeremiah's message when this whole section will need to be repeated with the position of individual and community reversed for there is an eternal dance between me and thee and us’ns and y’all.

We need to do a better job of wrestling with our multiple covenants and applying the many, varied, and even conflictual gifts all needed at the same time to make reasonable decisions better enough to last a traditional 7 generations long.

Blessings on dealing with your complicity in the social sins of your cohort as well as your own personal sins. One exacerbates the other and addressing any of them will likely start in bailiwick of the other. This is a much more difficult and worthwhile encounter than leaving it to G*D to bail us out of our latest Egypt or to take over our internal guidance system with the excuse that it is what is best for us.


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