An unworthy Deacon, named for the brother of God: James, striving to "work out his salvation with fear and trembling" within the Tradition (paradosis) of the Eastern Orthodox Faith. It is a strange and marvelous journey, and I am accompanied by the fourfold fruit of my fecundity. My wife, the Matushka or Diaconissa Sophia, is my beloved partner in the pursuit of Theosis, and she ranks me in every way.
I've spent a good deal of time and energy debating politics lately and I will admit I am a little tired of it. Partly, I think, because I am beginning to wonder about the time and energy ratio between that and my prayer/self-reflection time. But, besides that, I also am more and more coming to the conclusion that BOTH sides of the political fence are putting too much hope and faith into politics. I maintain the claim that the "religious left's" desire to make the wealthy feed the widows and orphans of Scripture, is really identical to the "religious right's" wanting to ban gay marriage or even the FURTHER religious right who'd like to retain or create AND enforce sodomy laws. It's just a matter of deciding WHICH Christian values you want the state to enforce. Which policy wins? The left can relish in their being accepted into the arms of the cool and nuanced - who'd otherwise hate their guts, while the right can smell their holiness via their legislation.
Don't get me wrong...I am voting and I happily offer who and why...I just won't worry so much about it. There really are far more important things to do...and if anyone disagrees with THAT point, then prepare for an argument.
Anyway, here is a post I put up at the LOG where I have done most my my political debating lately.
But honestly, if I spent 1/8 of the time praying that I currently spend reading and writing and worrying about politics, I wonder how different my life would be. Seriously, it's one thing to give a head nod to how TRULY little all of this politicking means in the eternal scheme of things, but we ought to stop and ask: if we REALLY believe it would we be living differently? Doing things differently?
Obama will not end poverty and McCain will not snuff out evil. Why do we put so much emotional weight into their efforts? Perhaps I am only speaking to myself here in this context...but where's my faith when I might actually have FEAR of an Obama or McCain presidency?
Where's the emotional weight put toward the repentance of my sins? I wonder if Christians, whether Obamaniacs or McCainites, put too much faith in government. Now to some degree this DOES play into my political opinion on matters - in that I want a smaller and smaller government. BUT, without that wish fulfilled, what then becomes of me and my family? What's the worse that could happen? What's the worse that could happen to others?
Anything comparable to not knowing and loving Christ? I doubt it.
Friends shared with us this weekend their conversion story. I was particularly moved by it because it centered in large part around the efforts of one man who I think I can fairly say evangelized them. Now THAT'S change and hope man....beyond which anything the government can do. What a difference this man made in their lives...and it occurred to me: what am I doing? Besides ranting about politics and putting far too much hope in it?
There's a world of difference I could make in my home to start with. Instilling a bit of hope and change there would be a great start. My neighborhood? My Parish? My work? My town? Heck...everywhere I go. There is so much good we can be doing...without the ugly cloudiness of politics where - as our friend and follow poster mentioned - they have Associations of Associations. Goodness...it's like asking a Bull to come in and do repair work in a china shop. Ah...there goes my politics again.
I can do good right now. For my own soul and the souls around me. Think about the range of presidents we have had in the last 75 years...have any of them really affected much change? Are we still waiting for a deliverer to bring in a time of peace and well distributed prosperity? A triumphant war hero who will save us from the Islamists?
I know, in the small term many things were accomplished...but I don't really see any grand hopes that tomorrow will bring us any sort of utopia...at least until "Blessed is the Kingdom...." is announced and we never must leave the Nave.
Perhaps when we wake on November 5th we should all wake up, check the news and shrug. Then get on with the important things in life? Maybe?
...offered by Dn. James Ferrenberg, a sinner at 12:23 PM [+] +++
"Perhaps when we wake on November 5th we should all wake up, check the news and shrug. Then get on with the important things in life? Maybe?"
No "maybe" about it. Start now.
Politicians are like guys in singles bars: They'll say whatever it takes. And like the hapless, desperate women who frequent such establishments, if we believe them, it's only because we WANT to be used, deceived, and discarded.