Inspired by Isaiah 24:1-16a
“And it shall be, as with the people, so with the priest; as with the slave, so with his master; as with the maid, so with her mistress; as with the buyer, so with the seller; as with the lender, so with the borrower; as with the creditor, so with the debtor. The earth shall be utterly laid waste and utterly despoiled; for the Lord has spoken this word.” Isaiah 24:2-3 (NRSV)
Our societies are built on hierarchies and binary divisions of people. There are the haves and the have-nots, the leaders and the followers, the powerful and the powerless. There are many people who are in the enviable position of being able to make decisions that have nothing but positive outcomes for themselves, with the negative consequences generated by those decisions being entirely shouldered by other people, unknown and invisible to the decision-makers. They believe they are shielded and immune from the struggles of others.
They are not.
Every decision that impacts one person impacts the entire world. Every decision made helps to shape the societal structures that undergird the entire human race. Even if we don’t immediately see the effects of our choices, those effects are occurring, and their impact is cumulative. Eventually they will build to the point of dominating the culture, for good or for ill, and no one will be above those changes.
We are all members of the human race. We are all citizens of God’s good earth, and we are all created in his image. We are called to care for each other and for the environment. And we are all dependent upon the care of others and the support of our environment. Take care in the decisions you make; consider the consequences and decide if they are something you personally are willing to face, and if you’re willing to subject your loved ones and your children to those consequences. Because none of us are immune to the consequences of our actions. We all help create the world in which we live; let’s seek the will of God and work to make it a good one.
Let us pray. Lord of all peoples, you created us to live in community with one another and with you. Enable us to recognize that we are all your children, that we may be more aware of the impact of our choices on the world in which we live. Through Christ our Lord, Amen.