“I’m just a lonesome traveler, The Great Historical Bum , Highly educated from history I have come, I built the Rock of Ages, ’twas in the Year of One, And that was about the biggest thing that man had ever done” Woody Guthrie
Unfortunately on this one I have to disagree with the wander minstrel of mirth. Jesus dying on the sins of the cross for the world was that greatest thing that man has ever done.
Mental illness can easily rob a person of their dignity. The lone fact that we have a mental illness in the first place puts us in a lower category in the eyes of some. We are dirty, anathema, something less than human. Of course, I defy such prejudice, but that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t exist.
By being openly bipolar I am inadvertently an advocate for the whole mentally ill community. In my recovery I have progressed very far. I have returned to the workforce and I have supported myself. Still my ‘career’ was only a fraction of what it once promised to be. However along the way I found the message of Jesus Christ and that has made all the difference in the world.
Why do we exist? What is the purpose of life? These are hard questions that demand answers. What about all this evil in this world, doesn’t man have some kind of responsibility in making things better for his fellow human being? I recall when these thoughts pressed hard on my mind I turned to alcohol and drugs for escape. It was an easy and convenient answer. Unfortunately the questions did not go away, but continued to haunt me. But I am glad to say they haunt me no longer.
I have come to understand that based upon the sole criteria of being a human being that a person deserves both love and respect. This callous materialism that exists in the world today, where a man’s life will be quickly snuffed out for profit, it both evil and wrong. That is these ‘endless’ wars that have been waged throughout history have been massive tragedies. This ‘nationalism’ that is presented, is in many ways a gimmick to get poor people to annihilate one another.
You would think that in rejecting of so much that society presents that I would feel isolated and alone. Actually that opposite is true. I have come to understanding that in following the teachings of Jesus Christ I have fellowship with God. Not only that, but it is my experience, that the poor and down trodden are quick to embrace, especially when one comes in a spirit of love. In turning away from the material world I have entered a spiritual world, one that is much better.
It all boils down to loving one another. Jesus commanded us to love both our neighbor and enemy. There is no wiggle room in this. Dropping bombs indiscriminately or shooting people down is as far away from love as you can possibly get. War is mankind’s greatest evil. After all it is written “Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God”.
But there is much more to the message of the cross. There is also that personal application. That Jesus was that perfect, sinless, sacrifice that appeased the wrath of God. In a relationship with Jesus Christ all of our sins are forgiven. That we can return to that relationship with God that sin had ruined. Of course working out our faith is a lifetime struggle with many ups and downs. But I can testify that in the thirty years that I have walked as a Christian I am a far better man than I was before. Far from perfect but always striving to improve.
The proof of the whole walk with God is in the living and not in the talking. I’m afraid many people have so bitterly missed the intentions of Jesus Christ that they are in fact Antichrist. When people talk about “Manifest Destiny” as God’s will they are only talking about fantastical evil imaginations of their self. So too, when ‘evangelicals’ today call for war I must point them once again to the second greatest commandment to “Love one’s neighbor”. Paul in Romans 12 commands us to “Feed our enemy”. Now that would be a great policy to put in place for North Korea. Such wisdom might save the lives of hundreds of million of people.
So on this day where many consider the resurrection of Jesus Christ let us be content in the fact that God does indeed love us. But let us not lose the message that we should live as brothers and sisters, as blessings to one another instead of curses.
Please check out my books. Sunset Sonnets is a spiritual and positive reflection on death and dying. https://www.amazon.com/Sunset-Sonnets-John-Kaniecki/dp/0692726705/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8