Nothing makes a man broad-minded like adversity – Will Rogers
I can certainly understand this quote from Will. The adversity in my life, although coming more frequently than I would like, has certainly made me more broad-minded. Coming from humble beginning has made me sensitive to the daily plight of the homeless and financially challenged around me. Going deaf in mid-life has made me more aware of the challenges others face with handicaps every day. Being asked to leave a church because I didn’t have the “right” beliefs has made me aware of all those who are gun-shy about anything spiritual.
I’m pretty sure my personal warranty expired when I turned sixty. Since then more and more of my body has become worn out so I sympathize with those who have it even worse off than I do. For these reason I have progressed from a young conservative to a socially progressive liberal. In other words I have matured as I have aged. I am also a follower of Jesus Christ and by following his examples I have tried to have love for the orphans, the widows, the homeless, and even those brought down my stresses of the day that resulted in various addictions. Yes, they might have brought their problems upon themselves but haven’t we all screwed up once in a while and don’t we all deserve love? Jesus was my example; he loved the loveless!
I readily admit that I am now a “bleeding heart do-gooder” that many of my conservative friends seem to despise so much. Where they rail against providing healthcare for all I dream of the day when that is a reality. Where they rant about people getting something for nothing I take Jesus’ words to heart giving without question for the “least of these”. Where they fear those among us who have gotten themselves in one form of trouble or another I try to cautiously reach out to them as well.
Like Will says my adversity has made me broad-minded. Those who have been given everything in life need to get a taste of real adversity to realize just how just much they have. They need to quit complaining about not having the latest (you name it) and start showing some compassion for those who have much less than they do. They need to realize that although they pretty much eat whatever and whenever they want there are those that struggle to put even one meal a day in their family’s stomach.
For those fortunate enough to have discretionary money they need to be willing to fork over a little of that money in taxes for those who are not as fortunate at they are. They need to realize that the Bible saying that “it is harder for a rich man to get into heaven than it is for a camel to go through the eye of a needle” is not so much about riches as it is about being broad-minded and compassionate for their fellow human beings..
But what do I know.
4 thoughts on “Being Broad Minded….”
Do you feel that the best vehicle for giving money is the government though? I see so much waste. Is there some way we can give tax breaks (again) for charitable actions or funds?
I, too, think health care should be for everyone—yes, even those who figured out how to “get into the country” without “permission”. I think the same of education. I think all children should have NUTRITIOUS food served at school- all meals if the child needs it. I think every person should be able to work. BUT I don’t think the federal government should be involved in most of these issues. I wouldn’t mind giving even more to local taxes if they took care of these issues. Unfortunately, I have witnessed, first hand, what happens when big government gets into business…that would be why we serve beef slime and American cheese on white read to children (all USDA farm subsidy items).
Where does a local progressive go? Not to Washington —that is for sure!
Some deep thoughts here Jan. I am like you in that I wish someone would step forward and take the burden of “the least of these” off our government’s shoulders. But the bitter truth is that government, mainly State and local, bear over 90% of that responsibility. If only the church, whichever brand you believe, would quit building their palaces and take care of the poor as the Lord intended! But that hasn’t happened in almost two millenium and probably never will again.
The old saying that applies here is that our government is pretty bad except when you consider the other alternatives. I too have seen times when government botches the job we give it. I was in a regulated industry and some of the regulations were pretty stupid. But I am also grateful that we have all the federal contributions of food stock to the local soup kitchen I volunteer at. I am grateful when government helps families with Medicaid who would die without it. I am grateful for more than I am regretful of I think. Yeah the federal government screws up much of what they touch but if they didn’t do the things that others “won’t be bothered with” then our country would be in pretty dire shape.
We must remember that the federal government is doing the people’s business and if we don’t like it then it is up to us to do something about it. It is up to us to be sure that our representatives are doing our business as we intend it done. If not there is the ballot box and if that fails then maybe some of us need to step forward….
It is wonderful to find a kindred spirit. Thank you for that.