In 476 C.E. Romulus, the last of the Roman emperors in the west, was overthrown by the Germanic leader Odoacer, who became the first Barbarian to rule in Rome. The order that the Roman Empire had brought to western Europe for 1000 years was no more. Maybe it happened because of complacency. Maybe it happen out of weakness. The jury is still out and it’s history is still being written way after the fact. As our own world continues to unravel with no “bottom” in sight, is there any hope on the horizon for us? The U.S.A. isn’t the Roman Empire but it has been invaded by ‘barbarians” who have no substantive knowledge of our journeys and struggles toward the greatness of the past 241 years. These are the barbarians who have little regard for the rule of law, basic morality, history or propriety. These are the barbarians who cannot distinguish between good guys and bad guys. These are the barbarians who worship power and money over clean air and water. These are the barbarians intent on preserving a wall between the haves and the have nots. These are the barbarians who have chosen to isolate us from the rest of civilization.
I know we go through cycles and rough patches but we usually wind up righting the ship and plowing forward. Progress, lately has been glacial. The adage of one step forward and two back has been amended in this very strange political age to one-half step forward and three back. The once strong morality of this country has been substituted for a pseudo and convenient morality wrapped in the flag touting some unrecognizable form of situational-ethics-Christianity. It is a morality that is as empty as the souls who push it. The hope is that this too shall pass. That this passing is not happening as fast as we would like it too, feeds into a sense of helplessness.
From today’s second Sunday in Advent readings:
But the day of the Lord will come like a thief,
and then the heavens will pass away with a mighty roar
and the elements will be dissolved by fire,
and the earth and everything done on it will be found out. (2Peter 3)
While we wait our hope springs eternal knowing that a course correction is in the offing. We need to believe that. The alternative belief is depression. Yes the ship is off course now and it will be a while before it finds true North again. A safe harbor may still be found. Truth will prevail and out of the genuine goodness and sense of fairness and decency of our fellow American citizens, the nation will persevere and thrive. Hurricanes and wild fires and earthquakes make us stronger. Executive orders can be erased. Repealing laws that protect the most vulnerable amongst us can be reversed. Passing of selfish reforms can be challenged. The time is coming.
As it is written in Isaiah the prophet:
Behold, I am sending my messenger ahead of you;
he will prepare your way.
A voice of one crying out in the desert:
“Prepare the way of the Lord,
make straight his paths.” (Mark 1:1-2)
The sleeping giant that is the core of this country’s greatness is stirring in it’s slumber. It will awaken soon to fight back and ultimately defeat the barbarians.
and so it goes…