As I’ve been listening & reflecting upon the Gospels lately, I have been thinking about the world we live in where we are losing our sense of what it means to be who we were created to be. We as Christians know the story. We know how God Almighty didn’t simply create, but with a love that is apparent all around us, created us with the greatest love. He created us with the innate gift to give and receive love, most importantly to Him and others but to love the created world we live in. We know that story, and as Christians, we also know the part that He entered by way of His Son into our human & personal history so that not even one of us would be lost; so that we might all be saved. That is hope fulfilled! So why then are we in the dire straights we find ourselves in as a society now? Why is the world going to ‘hell in a hand basket?” There are surely many reasons, but one of the reasons (and a point of reflection) is that we need to spend time contemplating integrity in our own lives. We need to strive to be men and women of integrity, and as Christians to call others to integrity too.
The world is not going to ‘hell in a hand basket’, in fact the world we live in is a reflection of what we make it to be. The world is a good and beautiful place, we enhance that beauty or we bring ugliness into it. Take death for instance. Death is a hot topic right now with the assisted suicide legislation before parliament. Certainly we are all called to stand against what we see as misguided direction in legislation and attitudes among our elected leaders; but more than this we need to reflect upon life and death in a beautiful way. I shared the story of being with my mother from life into death, but I have been with other loved ones at that time and have seen great value and meaning pour forth from the life of a dying person. I could not imagine myself supporting assisted suicide or seeing any life as not worthy or valuable enough to safeguard. But I also have to ask myself (as we all do) – what am I really doing with the insight the Lord gave me? Am I speaking out or contacting my Member of Parliament to let my voice stand? Am I speaking publicly about the great dignity of human life? Am I treating everyone I meet each and every day with the greatest possible dignity? Do I see everyone as a precious gift from God? I know there is (and maybe there always will be) room for growth there.
This is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the ways that I know I need to become a man of integrity. The words and actions which come from each one of us, they need to speak to who we are and who we need to be as precious children of God. The question which captures this is one which our Lord Himself posed to the disciples. Who do people say that I am? Who do people say you are?