Week 6 Day 3
Finding God in the every Day
Exodus 20:4 “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. 5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, 6 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.
Lots of words are being tossed around these days concerning history, legacy, imagery, feelings, and legends. The need for people to remember the past is a good way to avoid falling into the same failures as those who preceded us in this struggle of life. When Paul remarked;
Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 3:13-14 I wondered what he was thinking. Our modern landscape, particularly around our old city centers was modeled architecturally fpr the most part after the Roman colonies and Rome itself. History shows us a landscape littered with the detritus of statues, monument, altars, temples all to venerate someone or something long dead. The photo above shows the moment when the statue of Saddam Hussein was toppled in Iraq. Even before he was caught and hanged, it seemed that the world was done with him. I am reminded of the poem “Ozymandias” by Percy Bysshe Shelley
Percy Shelley’s “Ozymandias”
I met a traveler from an antique land
Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
Stand in the desert. Near them, on the sand,
Half sunk, a shattered visage lies, whose frown,
And wrinkled lip, and sneer of cold command,
Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
Which yet survive, stamped on these lifeless things,
The hand that mocked them and the heart that fed:
And on the pedestal these words appear:
‘My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!’
Nothing beside remains. Round the decay
Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare
The lone and level sands stretch far away..
The statues being topped today were not erected by the individuals portrayed. They are figures from our past and as such represent to the observer a history which me may not want to think about or remember. To many they are venerated as portraying the highest achievements of the culture of the times. For many, they are painful reminders that for all of our efforts to bring about the fulness of hope for all Americans that was expressed, and implied in our Constitution have fallen far short of those lofty goals.
For me as a Christian I believe that I will stand with Paul. With so much unrest and violence in the hearts of people today I have become somewhat indifferent to ravings of angry people that attempt to distract me from my goal of reaching what Paul was straining for.