Tonight a political TV drama melded with my life experiences to form this question and answer, derived from situations presented in the aforementioned drama. This article attempts to analyze the different choices that presented themselves and the virtues that may be derived from responding with the right decisions. I am approaching each from the perspective of “What can I learn from…?” as opposed to “What should I learn from…?” The difference may be nonexistent but I think it will prove otherwise.
Question 1: When facing a difficult time of life, particularly where it may affect many others, and a former foe is working with me to resolve it, can I step beyond old wounds and set aside future conflict in order to seek the present good?
Answer 1: Yes. To address the present only, this would be the Biblical course of action as opposed to holding a grudge and hurting others as collateral damage of strife between me and another, most likely unrelated to those involved. Answering for the past and future and all of the variables involved there is a completely separate and more complex matter, which I leave for future deliberation.
Question 2: If a conflict arises between me and an individual or entity whose character is distinctly evil, does their wickedness invalidate the need for my righteousness towards them when all manner of judgment may be due them? Can I learn to openly admit to and apologize for wrong on my part even if it be a miniscule infraction compared to their wrongs?
Answer 2: No/Yes. This is probably one of the most difficult scenarios to confront because it requires good from me even though ill may be given back. I cannot control how another will respond or how they will receive my kindness or repentance, but the required presence of my duty to each is undeniable. Good never justifies evil, and no degree of evil ever justifies its return by me. Please be careful to properly understand each word since “good” may not always be “happy” and “evil” is not the same as “sacrifice”. More room for discussion…
Question 3: What can I learn about decisions themselves? When I think that one is an “either-or”, is it possible that I need to spend a moment more and ensure that “both-and” is not possible and maybe best? Could it be that “win-win” is a more-frequent option than I thought when I was only working inside the box?
Answer 3: Time saved on the front may cost multiple times more in the tail end. Haste and success are not commonly partners. And while my past experience may indeed serve me well in the concluding process, others’ successes and failures should also be counted and evaluated. Finally, while little is new under the sun, the innovators, philosophers and theologians of past generations were the ones that did not accept the already-discovered as sufficient. Many had to dig quite deep, but their treasures have helped us understand the tenets of our faith and the potentials of technology.
God or man? Both. Is life a win-lose situation of living joys and sad deaths or a win-win of a purposeful life and an end that is only the beginning to life eternal? Must we assimilate the world or face the dissolution of the Church, or is it possible that the Church will survive without the world’s philosophies as it has for 2000 years by the blood of martyrs and the words of Scripture? Are my career choices to be mercilessly profit driven or to be righteously poor, or may God and man respect honest conduct and reward both profit and righteousness, if I maintain a humble heart?
Life…what an experience. Consider each moment and use even entertainment to grow in Christ [instead of letting it (ab)use you].
(c) 2006 Veritas Road