Friday, November 7, 2014

Loving the (Oxy) Morons

I have always had a thing for oxymorons. The late comedian George Carlin introduced me to the word in a bit where he talked about "jumbo shrimp" and "military intelligence" as being classic examples. We live in a world in which doublespeak and misleading facts are often leave many of us clearly confused (oxymoron). In fact, recently I have been aware of a number of oxymorons being lived out in our world- often by, if you'll excuse my judgement and name calling, plain ol' morons! Witness the following accounts...

  1. In the just completed election, voters seemed very certain of two things. They wanted to throw out anyone who has supported the policies of President Obama, and as many as 78% of them indicated their primary reason for this was the state of the economy. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, of course. But Forbes Magazine (not exactly part of the liberal media) just recently published an article documenting how every major economic indicator has greatly improved since Obama took office. In fact, THE business and money magazine in our nation rated him the 4th best President ever when it comes to the economy. There are plenty of things to disagree with the President about, but choosing the part of his job in which he has been most effective as the #1 reason to "throw the bums out" is definitely a living oxymoron.
  2. Many people here in the Tampa Bay area are very upset that Joe Maddon opted out of his contract to manage the Rays baseball team and immediately signed with the Chicago Cubs. They accuse the Cubs of tampering and have grown very angry with Joe, the best thing to happen to baseball in Tampa Bay in any of their lifetimes. They can't imagine why he would leave, except for more money. Well...duh!!! No one will miss Joe more than me, but there are so many reasons why leaving was smart. In Chicago, the Cubs, even when they are awful, play in front of a packed house every day in one of baseball's true cathedrals- Wrigley Field. They are not only developing outstanding young players like the Rays do, but they have the money to keep them once they become great. Plus, if Joe can get the Cubs to a World Series like he did the Rays in 2008, he will be legend- wait for it because they haven't been since 1945- ary among baseball fans. Most baseball fans in these parts know these things and in their hearts wish him well, yet they publicly whine and cry, "Why Joe? Why???" And they hate him for leaving. Oxymorons.
  3. A 90 year old man and two pastors were recently arrested in Fort Lauderdale for passing out meals to homeless people. They were in violation of a city ordinance, the type of which is being pushed in cities all over the country now. If feeding and caring for the homeless and others in need is a crime, then in Matthew 25 Jesus calls each and every one of us to be criminals. He doesn't suggest it- he says if we don't do it we are goats and we are gonna' burn! In fact, Jesus says that "whatever we do to the least of these we also do to him." Arresting those who are feeding the homeless is just like arresting our Savior. Protecting our communities by turning Jesus and those who truly follow him into criminals seems incredibly oxymoronic to me. 
It's easy to point out these foibles in others; the problem is my life is full of them as well. I am often judgemental of people I find to be too judgemental. I am a Diabetic Dessert Lover. My frustration levels rise when people don't understand my pacifism, and I become an Angry Peacemaker. My writing often indicates a hope for a bright tomorrow, but I tend to live in the past. I am a Pessimistic Optimist. I am a longtime registered Republican who is repulsed by what the party has become and some of the things it stands for today. You read it hear first- I am a Blue Republican. And while I spent many years  in the the service of the institutional church, it frustrates me to no end. I have a serious Love/Hate relationship with organized Christianity. Is there anything more oxymoronic than love /hate?
But there is Good News. Jesus totally gets (oxy) morons just like me! He often spoke in our language, teaching that the first shall be last, that we should love our enemies and that to find our lives we need to lose them. He was born into life on earth so that he could die. He died so that we might live. He taught us that laws do not lead to love, that love IS the only law that truly matters. And most importantly, he gave us grace and mercy so that we might know that connecting to God is not about some neurotic perfectionism, but about that the fact that we are sinners who are loved ANYWAY  by the Creator of the universe. Is there any better oxymoron than Forgiven Sinners

So what is the message today? That God loves us all, even when we are morons- and that Jesus calls us to love each other without restrictions or conditions. It is an open secret (oxymoron) that loves seems to be growing smaller (oxymoron) in our world. It is my least favorite (oxymoron) true myth (oxymoron) about the random order (oxymoron) of our society. Following Jesus is not about always being right, it is about always loving. It is my prayer today that all of us morons can learn that is the real truth. Like there can be a fake truth. I am such a moron...  Have a blessed weekend!

Because of Jesus,

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous11/07/2014

    Love this SOOOO much! It' so wrong that it's right (oxymoron!). Keep up the good work, CJ!


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