Geloof en hoop
Zuit se vraag oor Christene wat dit nie regkry om hoop te gee nie, het my onmiddelik laat dink aan ‘n wonderlike artikel van Walter Breuggemann (my gunsteling Christelike skrywer).
Die artikel, wat eintlik ‘n paper is wat hy by ‘n forum vir “Ethics and Public Policy” gelewer het, is getiteld “Full of Truth and Hope“. (Gaan lees dit. Dis flippen awesome.)
Hy lys eers “four claims of faith” wat hy sê ons sal help fokus. (That the dramatic movement from Friday vulnerability through Saturday dread to Sunday surprise is only made by narrative particularly, not by scientific proof, not by universal truth, not by logical discourse. It is done, rather, by narrative acknowledgment that subverts a world of power, by vulnerability that exposes a world of dread, through brooding absence that rejects a world of control through surprise.)
Daarna noem hy twee reaksies op die boodskap van die profete: denail (The denial is among those who refuse to see and so imagine that Israel will not be destroyed…that the Messiah will not die.) en despair (The despair is among those who know, but cannot imagine a future, cannot discern a way out of no way; they could not believe that Messiah will be raised from the dead to new life.)
Die evangeliese “antidote” vir denial is tuth-telling: (The truth that is to be told is that the world is out of sync, that we live against the grain of God’s holiness, and that such living has immense negative consequences). Die antidote vir despair is hope-telling, waaroor Brueggemann op aangrypende wyse uitbrei.
Die gevolg van beide denial en despair is passivity en acquescence, whether it is the passivity of our illusion of moral superiority and assured triumph, or acquiescence of fatalism that cowers before an inescapable despair. Either way, the consequence of such acquiescence is abdication, a refusal to engage issues, an inability to think or act outside the box of dominant power arrangements and consensus plausibility systems. The empire does not require agreement or need approval. It requires only passive conformity among those who believe that there is no alternative.
So, wat moet ‘n arme gelowigetjie doen? Volgens Brueggemann:
1. Disengagement When I think about disengagement from common practice, I think first of all about the demands of production and consumption that are defining for the lives of many of us, and the reality of sabbath as a deep act of resistance and alternative, the refusal to have our lives defined by the lens of the market.
2. The practice of calling things by their right name and practicing the exposé of toxic euphemisms.
3. [Being] a hospitable place for hosting the profound ambiguity many people feel about these matters. On all of the great questions before our society—war, immigration, abortion, gays and lesbians—it is clear that most people are enormously ambivalent. Our society, in its dominant mode, allows no such ambivalence to be voiced and readily evoke an uncertainty that needs to be honored.
4. More than that, a safe venue of honest ambiguity is the seedbed for newness it is the place where God’s spirit can do the work of newness.
Naby aan die einde vertel hy die volgende storie:
Soon after World War II, there was a group of aging German pastors and their wives who had suffered much at the hands of the German regime. They were getting on their tour bus and there was a young man scurrying to get all their luggage on, working with great zest. Someone asked who he was; answer: “That is Martin Niemoeller, he is eighty.” Niemoeller long before had decided not to be afraid. I read that when he was a much younger man, he was in a delegation to see Hitler just after Hitler had come to power in 1933. When Niemoeller came home, his wife asked him about the meeting and what he had learned. He answered, “1 learned that Herr Hitler is a very frightened man.” It was given to Niemoeller, unlike most of us, to be unafraid. And when we are unafraid, energy is given.
Antwoord dit die Zuit se vraag? Sekerlik nie. Maar steeds. Hoendervleis.
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