British author Graham Greene so aptly wrote in his novel "The Power and the Glory," "There is always one moment in childhood when the door opens and lets the future in." Rather than one moment, for me, it was a collection of moments growing up in a home in which my folks did not divvy out weekly allowances unless they were earned, and encouraged us to attend college but did not pay the bill. Never letting us perceive our situation as unfair, Dad taught us the value of hard work by the example he set working overtime in order to make ends meet.
Recently, after reading a few articles in Sojourners magazine, written by President Obama's spiritual advisor, Jim Wallis, I was reminded how far away from these basic values we've strayed as a nation. An October 20, 2011 article, "The Un-Economy," which can be read online at http://blog.sojo.net, depicts the economy as "unfair, unsustainable, and unstable," and made the spiritual case for resolution through collectivism. "If you search the scriptures," Wallis wrote, "you'll find that God not only cares about poverty, but especially, unfairness and equality."
Of course, God cares about poverty. Taken at face value, Wallis' statements are harmless enough to those who have no knowledge of his background. Like Jeremiah Wright, Wallis has been preaching the "gospel" of collectivism for more than 30 years, convincing many that it is morally acceptable to deploy American tax dollars to alleviate suffering the world over. And now, Wallis' has both a bully pulpit and the ear of our president to further his anti-capitalism cause.
In another article, "An Open Letter to the Occupiers from a Veteran Troublemaker," Wallis referenced a "moral economy" and told Occupy Wall Street protestors they had created "new safe spaces" for Americans to examine "who we are, what we value most, and where we want to go from here."
I'm not a theologian like the good reverend, but I dare say the same God who cares about poverty and inequality provided an effective way to administer remedy by way of a small, four-letter word: WORK. Since Wallis began the conversation about mixing the toxic brew of church and state, I thought it would be an opportune time to mention the Bible he references makes it quite clear in II Thessalonians that each person has the responsibility to care for himself, "If a man will not work, he shall not eat." It also specifically charges the church and not government with the responsibility of caring for the poor, widows and orphans.
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