I have been reflecting deeply on the news that has surfaced this past week coming from Penn State. My emotions are on overload. My sense of compassion is full throttle. I am past anger. I want to move forward, to learning, to help the healing begin.
What strikes me most about this situation are the sins of omission. The act of complacency, the act of NOT doing something that should be done is a choice and has great consequences. Perhaps with the busy-ness of the Western world today, these decisions are made more and more. The thinking goes like this: no one will notice the mistake; it will get covered up and hidden; it is not as important as these others things we are dealing with; it will cause less pain if I leave it be; and on, and on. We are constantly trying to rationalize away the consequences.
This situation at Penn State is one of obvious consequence. Yet, how many times during the day do we encounter the same issue and choose not to act. Not to help the homeless on the street. Not to help the elderly in line in front of us. Not to let the car in front of us…. We have a tendency to cry foul when the issue is blatantly wrong. What about the daily opportunities?
Matthew 25: 44 Then they also will answer, “Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not take care of you?’ 45 Then he will answer them, “Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’
My prayer for the world today is that we see others before we see ourselves, that we share our lives with others instead of keeping to ourselves, and that we listen to others instead of hearing ourselves. It is not until we put others before us that we will be serving God’s kingdom. May we learn from the tragic circumstances at Penn State. Not that we shall point fingers at those but that we shall each grow and learn into the knowledge that we shall love and protect one another and act on their behalf.