Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Outrage and hope

by José Antonio Pagola (English translation by Rebel Girl)
Buenas Noticias: Blog de Jose Antonio Pagola
November 28, 2012

Luke 21:25-28,34-36

An indestructible conviction has sustained the faith of Jesus' followers from the beginning: spurred on by God, human history is heading towards its final liberation. The unbearable contradictions of human beings and the horrors that have been committed in every era must not destroy our hope.

This world that sustains us isn't final. Some day the whole of creation will give "signs" that it has reached its end, to give way to a new liberated life that none of us can imagine or understand.

The gospels contain the memory of one of Jesus' reflections about this end time. Paradoxically, his attention isn't focused on "cosmic events" that might happen at that time. His main objective is to lucidly offer his followers a lifestyle in the face of this future.

The end of history isn't chaos, the destruction of life, total death. Slowly, in the midst of light and darkness, by listening to the calling of our hearts or ignoring the best that is within us, we are going towards the ultimate mystery of reality that we believers call "God".

We are not to live caught in fear and anxiety. The "last day" is not a day of anger and vengeance, but of liberation. Luke sums up Jesus' thinking with these admirable words: "Stand erect and raise your heads because your redemption is at hand.” Only then will we really know how much God loves the world.

We must revive our confidence, lift our spirits and awaken hope. Some day the financial powers will sink. The folly of the powerful will end. The victims of so many wars, crimes and genocides will know life. Our efforts for a more humane world will not be forever in vain.

Jesus struggles to shake the consciences of his followers. "Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy." Don't live like fools. Don't let yourselves be carried away by frivolity and excess. Keep indignation alive. "Always be awake." Don't relax. Live with clarity and responsibility. Never tire. Always keep the tension.

How are we experiencing these times that are hard for almost everybody, anguishing for many, and cruel for those who are drowning in helplessness? Are we awake? Are we living in slumber? From the Christian communities we must foment outrage and hope. And there's only one way: being together with those who are being left with nothing, drowning in despair, rage, and humiliation.

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