Some mornings…. About the only good news this morning is that neither incident seems to have involved Islamic extremists. But is that really good news? The only enemy here is us. There is no one to blame but us, and what is so sad is we will try to blame everything but. You can bet we’ll start hearing calls for more gun control in the next few hours. In London regulations will almost assuredly be passed, rents raised to offset compliance costs and it will quickly be more expensive to live in that already expensive city. We’ll blame guns not shooters. We’ll blame landlords and contractors, not tenants and their behavior.
Have you ever noticed how intractable environmental problems really are? The twin “saviors” of solar and wind power kill a lot of birds. The ultimate answer to carbon free power generation, nuclear, scares the pants off of everyone and while the volume of waste produced by it is extremely minimal, it is pretty doggone toxic. Then there are the “smaller scale” problems. We ban DDT and subsequently malaria and other mosquito born illnesses run amok. Often species preservation is a massive effort in animal husbandry, efforts that often retard the growth of other species – but I thought species diversity was the goal? It just seems like the answers are not within our reach.
Into this mess steps my devotional of yesterday, looking at a passage from Isaiah:
Yet, in Isaiah 24:5, Isaiah doesn’t attribute the pollution of the world to industry or chemicals. Rather, the defiling of the earth is a result of human disobedience. “The earth is defiled… [because people] have disobeyed the laws… and broken the everlasting covenant.”
Environmental problems are about us. Massive fires are about us. Shootings are about us. Yet we keep pointing over there when we need to be looking at ourselves.
Back in the Renaissance the burgeoning field of science defined six basic, simple machines. One of them is the “inclined plane,” you probably know it as a ramp. The idea is simple really. If something is too much work to lift straight up – take it the long way around using a little bit of work at a time. So often we look at big problems and want to lift straight up, yet so often those efforts fail. Gun control laws have not really reduced “gun violence.” We keep tightening building codes, but disasters keep happening. It seems like the latest environmental solution leads to another problem. Maybe we need to take the long way around? – Follow the ramp that runs through ourselves. All we need is patience and a willingness to look at ourselves honesty.
With tech stuff, it has been my experience that most things that don’t seem to be working well start working well if I quit trying to make them work like I think they should work and take the time to figure out how they were designed to work. I think the world is like that. Yes, the language of religion sounds a little harsh with all that talk of laws and covenants, but that is all it is talking about. If the world is not working instead of trying to make it work like we think it ought, maybe we need to take some time to learn how it was designed to work and live in it that way. You know, the designer’s way – God’s way.
My prayers go out this morning to the thousands upon thousands affected by the fire in London. From the survivors of the dead to those whose commutes are nightmarish, I pray for them. For those in Virginia, wounded or simply worried about the wounded, I ask God to provide you comfort. And then I pray that we will all take some time today to try and figure out how the Designer wants it to work, and then act accordingly.