Readings: Genesis 14: 18-20, Psalm 24, John 10: 10-18, Hebrews 5: 1-10
Is Bigger better? If it is better, then who is it better for? How does Bigger affect the personhood of the one eking out an existence trying to keep their family alive and hoping that something will change in the near future so that at least those who come after them will also have a piece of the Bigger pie? How does Bigger affect the dignity of those who do not share in the fiscal side of the business; Big business, Big church, Big portions, Big political ideologies (Socialism, Capitalism, Communism, any ism by any other name), Big profit (for someone, not for everyone – it can never be for everyone).
How does Bigger affect the relationships that are meant to exist amongst the people of God – it may draw us together as we complain about how expensive everything is getting; but then we only create a Bigger darkness than the darkness that already exists. It is when we are pitted against an enemy we cannot defeat (because they are Big) that we either give up or we fight against the system in ways that we can. It is normally those who are coming into this system just out of the idealism of youth who fight (because they still have the energy to fight). We fight against each other, we steal from each other and in small ways we emulate the methods of those who do it in the name of provision for all; we do Big business on a small scale.
A farming conglomerate who would mass produce a vegetable and flood the market with their goods destroys the little farmers who were a part of the community and helping the community be subsistent; who were helping ensure that there is dignity for all because everyone still has a name and that name is not Consumer. Big business prevents people from being producers and converts them all into users; and then baptises them all with the name Consumer in the name of the market and of the coin and of the cheque (the promise). This system stops us from being useful and helpful and caring because we are too busy surviving. In a village, we do not survive; we live. Bigger turns the villages into a part of the whole in order to milk the whole.
Any system that turns us from a person into an unknown entity, from a people into the masses is a system that is bigger than us and any system that is bigger than us and has control over our thoughts and our natural instinct to care for each other is a system we have turned into a god.
God came to decentralise the market. He came to restore dignity to each individual, because every single person who has been born and will be born, every single individual who makes up the masses is worthy of a name. Every single person who takes a breath is worthy of making a significant difference with that breath. Jesus has experienced our life and has experienced the struggle between comfort and love, He has experienced the conflict between the community and the institution; He has experienced the pain between the ordained of God and the self-ordained. This is how we know that He helps us in our struggle as we wrestle with what is truly important (friendship) and what is only self-importance.
God is BIG, but God does not get lost in the Big. God is about each one of us. One at a time. God is outside of time and so He does not have to teach many at one time because He can afford to help each one of us learn how to love and care and be useful. One at a time. God is about each one of us because Godly community can only be build by God’s people. Thank you Jesus for interceding on our behalf.