July 4, 2019: Freedom and Responsibility

Krissa Lox

Active Member
Matthew 16:1-4

The Pharisees also with the Sadducees came, and tempting desired him that he would shew them a sign from heaven.
He answered and said unto them, When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red.
And in the morning, It will be foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowering. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times?
A wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given unto it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas. And he left them, and departed.

Matthew 16:24-26

Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.
For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?

Matthew 7:21-23

Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

Proverbs 27:23-24

Be thou diligent to know the state of thy flocks, and look well to thy herds.
For riches are not for ever: and doth the crown endure to every generation?

1 Corinthians 5:8

Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

Those who know me personally might remember that I don't usually post much for the military holidays, since having lost one fiance and two husbands to the aftermath of war over the past couple decades tend to make me not the greatest source of inspiration or festivity during such times. But today I'm not thinking of war, but of the broader concept of the relationship between freedom and responsibility of which war is only one of multiple sacrificial methods sometimes called upon to maintain it, and feeling some dismay that the modern concept of freedom we seem to now celebrate appears to be more an unrealistic idolization of freedom from sacrifice rather than freedom worth sacrificing for.

July 4th has become one of the major feast days of this country, but as such, more people will be concerned about grocery store prices being higher than expected than the underlying (and much more serious) factors of many fields' crops being lost or remaining unplanted and much shipping being hindered by washed out and re-routed highways, all casualties of the forseeable and to some extent preventable damage caused by floodwaters overwhelming essential national infrastructure that's been left too long neglected.

Like we expect some clear sign or direction from above -- whether from God or from government -- before we're willing to break out of our self-absorption enough to recognize and deal with things that need to be taken care of instead of being more proactive (and feeling less victimized) about doing right things just because they're the mature and responsibile thing to do. Instead we seem to prefer indulging in intellectual gluttony, endless debating lofty theories that make us feel more superior or sophisticated while forgetting basic tenets of how the mechanics of the world really operate. But I don't care what side of the aisle anyone is on, nobody's "making America great" again without fixing the farms and the roads first. (You'd think no one in Washington has ever played a strategy game before to have not figured that out yet.)

Not that I'm trying to preach to anyone here on this. As gamers, an irony crosses my mind sometimes that if the Lord tarries long enough that this isn't the final iteration of civilization before He comes, future archaeologists might one day mistake us for being some great, supportive pillar of cultural enlightenment and preservation that we certainly aren't, not realizing that a lot of the value we see in documenting history and practical industry is more often seen as eccentric recreation than as valuable social contribution. But it's yet another feeling of separation from modern culture when everyone else wants to party but the only song that sticks in my mind right now is "The Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald."

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