"Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." Paul to the persecuted at Philippi (2:5-11)

23 March 2013

Now is the winter of our discontent...

Okay, its been a while since I've blogged.   Mostly I've neglected the blog because I have so much to do that there's little time to gather my thoughts and say something you all will find worthwhile to read.  I do try to be considerate  and post only when I have something to say.  Even then, I admit that half the stuff on this blog are probably pretty forgettable.  Maybe that's a better ratio than most of the blog-world, but still...

And its been a long, cold, snowy and unpleasant winter around here.  Even my husband has made mutterings about moving back down South.  I'd much rather be hot than cold.

And I had the flu.  Foo on the flu.

But the world marches on... we have a new Pope and he seems really awesome. 
North Korea has new sanctions and is yowling over it. 

Mostly I'm glad to see both North Korea and the Pope in the headlines.  The Pope because he's given the media no choice but to report on a Christian who means what he says about the Gospel being good news for all people.  North Korea because it is good for Americans to see an enemy state that needs our compassion as much as it needs our vigilance. 

In fact, I saw an article a couple of weeks ago (kicking myself now that I don't have the link for y'all) about a guy who is trying to break a world record for having his picture taken in the most countries in a short period of time.  And he recently went to North Korea.... and his basic thesis for his entire project was this: There are awesome people everywhere.  The article coupled that with the fact that this guy was recently in North Korea.  Yes, there are awesome people in North Korea.

And America needs to know that.
There are some awesome people in North Korea.
Awesome people who love their families.
Who don't always get enough to eat.
Who don't all get to stay warm at night.
Who don't know any sort of lifestyle  other than the one they live.
Who want to know more about the world around them.
Who have curiosity, a sense of humor, and a vibrant, colorful culture.
Whose history goes back five thousand years
And means a lot to the people who inherited it.
Whose landscape is beautiful with rivers and lakes and seaside and mountains.
Who are not responsible for their governments decisions
Who are pawns in the game
Or worse victims of the players.

I am not criticizing UN policy.  I'm not making a political statement here.  I'm just noting that when we realize that our enemies are like us, they become easier to love... or at least like a little bit.

I saw recently also that 28% of North Korean children are malnourished.  Obviously that quarter of the population is less likely to live in the Capital.  They are the children of "hostile" classes who have never even gotten to see their capital city.  But its the number we're talking about here, more than one out of every four. 

And women who defect into China too frequently become sex slaves and prisoners on one side of the Yalu River or the other. 

And those numbers mean more when we remember that these awesome people love their kids as much as we love ours.

I don't know what is right and wrong in making policy.  I have no idea what the best way is to bring North Korea into the global community.  I just know that the more we understand about one another, the more reasons we'll have to stop the saber rattling and learn respect for one another.

I'm preaching tomorrow... Palm Sunday when we celebrate the one that the people thought would be the king who topples earthy regimes, and they were disappointed when they learned that his kingdom is not of this world.  When they came before him waving symbols of their national pride before he took up the symbol of his Kingdom humility.  When they thought he'd come with fire and fury and take care of those who, as they say, "Needed killin'" but were shocked when he himself died for the sins of others. 

History is full of powerless people.
No wonder they were shocked to see their greatest hope for victory, the one in  whom all power did indeed reside, lay aside his power and die.

For us.
For our enemies.