Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The Face of Christ Facing Humanity

I'm taking a deep breath in writing this post and I don't know if it'll express anything new under God's sun but I'll ask the Holy Spirit to guide my thoughts and fingertips and I'm just going to write.


In our new world of clicks and beeps, little poster-pleasers such as this one makes the rounds quickly on Facebook. We are a generation that lives in time with quick diddies and quick words of wisdom. We like things like that. The quicker, the better. If it sounds good, it is. If it sounds true, it is.

Our young people hardly pause to analyze or seek the wisdom behind the words. They simply move on to the next click, the next button, the next beep-beep.

So in three days I've confronted three young people about the poster-pleaser above. And the response was typically the same. "It's funny. You don't have to support it to think it's funny."

I groand in despair and begged them not to sound like O'bama on FB but I realized that there's our answer. It's all about entertainment, folks. Anyone who takes anything too seriously nowadays is a Loser with a capital "L". That's the message I translated, anyway. Life is short and if you take anything too seriously, you're neurotic. Get over yourself.

In a society where too much is assumed through media and little diddies and poster-pleasers, no one takes the time to address the people sharing these media-plugs and seeing what their true thoughts are. If it's funny, you simply laugh and click...or not. Simple. Never assume anything about anyone. And the more of a public display it makes, the funnier it is. If you can't laugh then it sucks-being-you.

Now I don't know if I'm at all correct in translating this or not but that's the mixed message I'm getting and I think I'm, realistically, pretty well "plugged" in to the younger generation. I may be wrong but bear with me.

{For those who like statistics, I am the mother of five: ages 24, 21, 19, 14, and 10; I am the D.R.E. at our church parish overseeing 200 little public schooled souls, and I assist at a homeschool co-op where I've lost count of the number of students attending every Monday}

And so...I told all three younger generational people that there was nothing "funny" about the poster above. It's a sad situation, I said, for our country and for our culture. Just sad. I found this write-up the day after and "plugged it" on FB. I didn't know what else to say about it. But now I'm writing and I can align my thoughts more carefully and fruitfully.


I realized something while looking at this new generation of young people. In my generation we knew people who were "different" but the differences weren't talked about except behind secretive hands. Today the differences are vocally tooted and in-your-face. The media probably makes it a broader thing that our children do. While there are brash homosexual people out there we love to hate, there are also brash hetrosexual people out there as well. I want to look at a different face, the face my children see despite the medias portrayal and the assumptions we all make because of the media and their agendas.


My husband and I have noticed, through our FB exchanges and reunions of people we grew-up with and went to school with, the people living in same-sex unions. At first we were disturbed by the lives presented there when, in reality, social media gives a very micro-vision of the whole person. There again, the image of looking through the bedroom keyhole disrupts our whole image of the world and those in it. We keep our sinful eye on that keyhole and label these people as corrupt and nasty. We don't pause and remember the people themselves. Very nice people, all of them. People we worked with. People we went to the beach with. People we partied with. People we got into trouble with. People we once spoke to on a daily basis. We remember them as funny, polite, kind and, chances are, they still are.


Yet we wave an agenda in front of their micro-space on FB in the name of Truth and all they see is us, whom were once called friends, now calling them sinners. Poster-pleasers, while brief and contrite, simply don't tell the whole story. Each person in those micro-pictures has a story, a hidden story, and we don't know what it is nor can we assume to know.


This younger generation, at least the generation I live with and work with, aren't looking through the proverbial keyhole the way their parents and grandparents are. Today's children work with these people, they go to school with them, they care for them in hospitals, they have lunch with them, they play on ball teams with them. These people are not faceless entities on the social media screen, they are living, breathing people in real life and today's younger generation (at least the children I know and a few I have raised) care about their feelings and their lives.


They call them friends and they feel their pain. They see the whole face, not through a keyhole, but across the lunch table, in the classroom, side-by-side at work.


They look at the whole face and they are not appalled.


It reminds me of this picture of Mother Teresa...


I really love this picture. It's the true face of Christ facing humanity.


She is not asking, "Are you an illegitimate child? Were your parents married? Are you homosexual or hetrosexual?"

She is not worried about how many friends one has or what people are posting on FB (even though FB was not around when she lived, you get my point).


She is not walking in a demonstration line.


She is simply and intently, with great love, feeding a child. It's a beautiful, fruitful act of love.


She fed us too, with her words because there is still need in this world for the prophets and we need to know the Truth and we need to be led towards it. The Truth needs to be spoke, Yes! Emphatically, Yes!


But not with brash superiority.


This past Mother's Day the Sisters of Reparation visited our church parish. I went to the mission that evening and it was beautiful. The sister who was speaking told us that Yes, the Truth should be spoken but then you need to leave it in God's hands and walk away. Leave it to God.


I wish more people would take that advice to heart. I see these young people being beat to death with the Truth and, because of the constant flogging, they leave Mother Church and all it's wisdom and beauty.


We need to get off our social media and do something heroic...like feed a child, smile at someone, reach out and help a friend.

Many times, actions speak louder than words and, sorry, but poster-pleasers (for lack of a better definition) do not cover the Truth with the justice it deserves. We have the Scriptures and the Holy See to help us discern the Truth. We fool ourselves into thinking we can possibly do a better job. We can't. We are not that wise or that holy.


We need to quit assuming the worse in people by what they micro-manage on their social media. If it disturbs your soul and takes away your peace than Satan has latched onto your weakness and you have fallen into the trap of paying more attention to the debate than to the person. The debates take our vision away from the people. The media knows this; Satan is tipsy with delight because of it.


Life is not about topics or agendas or protests; it's about the people involved and if we got off our media soapboxes for just a second and tried to understand the people involved there would be no protest, just quiet compassion from behind a coffee cup or a bowl full of mush.


What is the saddest of all is that the world and everyone in it has been downgraded to just a political agenda, debate, and protest. In the name of saving souls, we have lost sight of the souls God puts into our lives. We want so badly to prove ourselves right or wrong that we do not feed one another with love but, rather, with too many words. And I sadly fear I'm doing that here, right now. So in closing, let us listen to Pope John Paul II's wise words:

"We shall not be saved by a formula, but by a person." ~ Pope John Paul II's Apostolic Letter Novo Millennio Ineunte ("At the Beginning of the New Millennium")


That homosexual person God puts into your path might be your salvation. Think about it.

2 comments:

  1. Funny I should read this. It just so happens that my 13 yr-old nephew informed us that he is gay..AFTER we discovered his addiction to internet pornography & AFTER he met another gay person online and invited him to his grandmother's house (because he has more freedom there) for "experimentation," purposes. Three weeks later, we received a phone call that he tested positive with H.I.V., only to find out 5 days later that it was a "mistake."

    I cannot begin to tell you the saddness in my heart over this discovery. Just this week, I had to refuse him the opportunity to spend time with me, his uncle, & 18 mos. old & 7 yr old cousins (who absolutely adore him). WHY? Because it is my duty to protect my family from potential diseases to the best of my ability.

    Me & my husband's decision runs contrary to your article, but, I felt it is absolutely necessary to write that we need to love people, Yes. No doubt. But, to turn a blind eye to the dangers of homesexual acts (and disordered heterosexual acts) is not being "loving," nor is it being "Christ-like."

    When Mary Magdalene came to our Lord. He said, "I do not condemn you." .... but, the words we so often forget--the MOST IMPORTANT words of all---he said, "now get up, & sin no more."

    May we all have the courage to LOVE, even when it's not so easy.

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  2. Dear Pro-Life Mom, Thank you for writing---and for reading. I don't think people forget the words "now...sin no more." We are just all too conscious thaat we sin every day. We are contrite, at best.

    I have 5 children and, from a parent's point of view, understand and sympathize all too well with your need to protect your children. Every parent must do what he/she feels is best. We will be answerable.

    But I am also thinking of mealtime just last week with my girls and friends of ours. The waiter was someone I knew, his father is a deacon in our church. He lives the gay lifestyle and believes himself to be one. He's a very nice young man, if misguided. I knew who he was. Most workers inthe public are strangers to us and we have no clue what lifestyle they are living. Homosexuals are not the only ones living an immoral, unsafe lifestyle, yet we encounter these people and interact with them daily.

    I hope, when we left the restaurant, he remembers me as the nice lady who works at the church and, if he's ever knocked off his horse by a bright light, he'll feel welcome to come by my office and ask me questions about God and the faith we share.

    I have two other posts you might wish to read. This one counteracts any concerns you might have had with the above article: http://cajuncottage.blogspot.com/2012/05/not-that-face-of-christ-needs.html

    In this one I mention the incident between Christ and the adultress:
    http://cajuncottage.blogspot.com/2012/05/what-about-those-sinners.html

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