Friday, February 18, 2011

Various and Sundry, February 18

I'm preaching this Sunday at All Saints, San Leandro, and everything I see seems to me to be related to the readings this Sunday, a great set of readings that all, I think, boils down to the verse of the Psalm,

Teach me, O Lord, the way of your statutes
and I shall keep it to the end.

One of my very favorite verses of the Psalms, and the section of Psalm 119 that was used at my ordination to the transitional diaconate. The thing I love is that "it"--the way of the statutes; it's not about each individual law.

ANYWAY, the point is, I keep seeing stuff that reminds me of the readings, or the readings make me look at the stuff I'm seeing through that particular lens. Such as Lionel Deimel's great aphorism, "If God had wanted to give us clear instructions for living, he wouldn’t have given us the Bible." Oh, you can say that again.

Another thing I'm seeing through this lens is both this article and the Ted talk below about what kind of incentives work for people. They are the antithesis of another grand aphorism, "The beatings will continue until morale improves." Can you see how this applies to religious life as well?

In the aid world, there's been a lot of chatter about World Vision distributing the leftover T-shirts from the SuperBowl--the ones that celebrated Pittsburgh's non-existent win. Fascinating stuff, very thought provoking. As Texas In Africa says,

It says something sad about our society's materialism and greed that we can't wait a few days for the NFL to print up accurate t-shirts while not wasting money on printing ones it knows will not be sold. But it says something even sadder when an organization that purports to be engaged in poverty alleviation with a faith-based motive won't tell the NFL "no" when it is asked to do something that actually contributes to the causes of poverty and injustice. It matters if theology motivates your behavior, and that should be reflected in decisions the organization makes about GIK [gifts in kind].

World Vision, I think you can do better.

So can we all. What is the way, not the law?

No comments: