There’s a song by Leonard Cohen, protesting against the state of the world. It’s chillingly accurate, and can make one feel rather hopeless. But there’s actually much to be learned from it.
Here’s some excerpts... Everybody knows that the dice are loaded Everybody rolls with their fingers crossed Everybody knows the war is over Everybody knows the good guys lost Everybody knows the fight was fixed The poor stay poor, the rich get rich That's how it goes Everybody knows…
When I first heard these lines, my reaction was to shake off the dreary, fatalistic mood they brought. And yes, we don’t want to give in to depression, fear, or hopelessness. On the other hand, we could probably all benefit from stopping to think “why is the world in such a state?”
Across the nations, the war on values rages, and the “good guys” all too often seem to lose. Physically, families continue to be torn apart by war, famine, disease, divorce, and abuse. Economically, societies have never been more polarized – with the richest 1% of the population controlling over 50% of the planet’s wealth. Everywhere you go, you can hear stories of people unable to cope with rising costs, and losing sometimes not only their material possessions, but worse, their dignity. The dice truly are loaded, and more and more, there is a prevalent attitude of resignation; a collective sigh – if you will – of defeated morale. The pursuit of survival has trumped the pursuit of happiness.
So, what’s the point? Why am I reiterating what we already know? Because, my friends, I don’t believe it has to be this way. We have the answer, and it’s simple. It’s been said “all you need is love”, but where does that leave us? I like the clarification in this statement from C.S. Lewis: “Love is not affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person’s ultimate good as far as it can be obtained.”
So, if we truly wish for others’ ultimate good, our behavior will reflect that desire. We may not be able to end the wars, cure all the sick, reverse disaster, or set everything right, but we can do what we can do. And each of us knows what that is, in our unique situation. God’s Love for us brought Him to earth, so that He could bring about the ultimate good in our lives – redemption from sin and freedom from fear.
When we know Him, we need not worry, no matter how bad the world seems. In fact, by faithfully sharing our knowledge of Him, we will see change, and one day, everyone will know His Love. (Habakkuk 2:14) -Chris Mizrany