Thursday, September 4, 2008

Against Dominating Despair


The despairing and disbelieving conversations that dominate how the media is imagining and interacting with the crises facing the City of Manukau (and most of our planet for that matter) have driven me to Walter Brueggemann.
He claims:
"... the dominant text of our culture is a practice of despair. A closed, settled world of reasonableness requires that there are no new gifts to be given, and there is no Giver who might give gifts. There is nothing more than management and distribution of what is already there, distribution and redistribution, wars about distribution of land and oil and water, no more gifts. Everything is limited and scarce, to be guarded and kept, to be confiscated and seized. It is so in the public domain of economics, not less so in the intimate world of human transactions and emotional need - not enough of love, a shortage of forgiveness, and finally a deprivation of grace in this age and in the age to come."
(Walter Brueggemann, 2006, The Word that Re-describes the World).

The counter-text of our faith is the daring, finger-giving-gritted-teeth, pervasive conviction that God and His healing is larger than every circumstance our communities face. Surely, that is the hopeful noise that we should be making today?

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