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Friday, February 06, 2004

Cheap, Cheap

"Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, baptism without church discipline, communion without confession, absolution without personal confession. Cheap grace is grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ living and incarnate."
-Dietrich Bonhoeffer

It is so easy to settle for the CHEAP version of the things that should define who we are. A similar paragraph could be written about CHEAP love, CHEAP friendships, CHEAP entertainment, CHEAP art, CHEAP intimacy, CHEAP careers.

If it is worth having, it is worth working for. If it is worth having, it isn't easy. If it is worth having, it isn't 100% feel good.

We know better, yet we continue in our ignorance.

"We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased."
- C.S. Lewis

Far too easily pleased. Understated, don't you think? We want the quick burger, the drug to heal us, the dating service to match us up with a mate, th quickie/no-fault divorce when it all goes to hell. We settle for mediocre music and writing and theology and conversations. We don't call others on to sacrifice because we really aren't too keen on the idea of sacrifice ourselves. We don't hold each other to high standards because we don't want to live up to them ourselves.

The result? Where there is a society that doesn't cling to things of real value, there is a steady decline. Where there is a society that doesn't value virtue and acknowledge an ultimate Truth, there is a society that despises life, chooses "rights" without the corresponding "responsibilities", and detests youthful innocence.

"It is no accident that with the growing acceptance and toleration of mediocrity in sports, politics, and society, we also suffer through increased corruption."
- Unattributed

Then we wander around, wondering why we feel lost, alone, hopeless...helpless.

God help us.


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