I’ve noticed something about the humans in my 50 years on this rock. Seemingly, everything used to be better. Just ask anyone. Music, books, movies, sports, and just about everything else under heaven used to be better. I remember hearing statements like that when I was a handsome little cutie at 5 years old. While I thought it odd over the years to hear that said so frequently, I am now at the age where I, too, have joined in singing the chorus about the wonders of yesteryear. In fact, the older I get…the more I say it. I tell myself it’s a human thing…we all do it…right?
Today we live in an age of technology that in many ways has made things truly better. We can do things now that no one would have even deemed possible just a couple of decades ago. The Smartphone alone has changed culture…some of it good…some of it not-so-much. You can also buy a Smart TV…even a Smart Car. Complete and healthy meals can be shipped to your door. You can order groceries online and simply go by the store and they’re already bagged up waiting on you. Can I get an AMEN? 🙂
While I could spend hours writing on these advances, we need to realize this amazing progression has come at a cost…a very high one. Because there’s so much out there “for us”…it’s easy to spend the bulk of our time thinking about us and only us. Truthfully, and to be more precise…the focus is really on ME! Though this has always been an issue with our human nature to be selfish, we are now seeing this problem on a scale that’s unparalleled in our nation’s history. Social media has opened the doors for anyone to holler about anything with little or no consequence. Not to sound “preachy” but it’s hard to think of our country as the “United States” when we look like a bunch of individuals who really don’t care about other people.
These problems are pretty much a given to those who are paying attention. We see it without straining our eyes. It’s before us morning, noon, and night…weekdays and weekends. The spirit has infiltrated every arena where humanity gathers. From families to factories, ballfields to coffee shops, courthouses to churches…on and on it goes. I want what I want…and that’s all that matters.
Interestingly enough, this is not a new era or a new thought found in human history. It’s always been with us. However today it runs on greased rails at unprecedented speeds. The Bible is very forthright in showcasing this tendency of ours. Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden kicked things off in earth-shattering fashion. This spirit led Cain to kill Abel. In short order, God sent a flood upon the whole earth as judgment because humanity did what it wanted. As history progressed our human natures continued to highlight where our priorities were. In spite of God’s blessings and callings on our lives, we wanted other things.
Perhaps the most stunning summary of humanity found in the entire OT is found in the last verse of the last chapter of the Book of Judges as the writer closes the telling book with an almost haunting summary of the culture of the day…which now serves as a dock where America has decided to tie up her ropes and stay a while…all the while thinking she has progressed to bigger and better things. Judges 21:25 says “In those days there was no king in Israel. Everyone did what was right in their own eyes.” Ouch.
This verse initially stood as a sad and shocking reality of Israelite life in spite of the repeated blessings of God. In actuality it was a type of indictment against the nation. Sadly, we don’t have to look back and imagine what that must have been like. In the midst of our fast-paced progression into the future, we have arrived safely… backwards. We are here. We are raising our kids here. Perhaps we are celebrating a journey that never really ventured far from the port. Maybe we never left in the first place.
Blessings to all! Thank you Monticello!!! 🙂