Spacefem (spacefem) wrote,

life and death

On the front of the weekly church newsletter there's always a note from our senior pastor. This week it was about the Passion of Christ. I haven't seen the movie, I don't really want to. I hardly ever go to see violent movies. You know what? Our crazy liberal pastor said the same thing. For both of us, it came down to the same question: In order to live according to the teachings given during the life of Christ, do we need a full, painful, ingrained understanding of his death? Was the death as important as the life? More important? What do we dwell on? What do we study? What should remind us, day after day, what we're living for? A life, or a death?

I decided when I was thirteen that it was life. I remember the moment. I'd been reading the Bible, it made me mad. I didn't understand why the women weren't worth anything unless they had sons. I renounced the entire religion. I mean, I didn't even make it to Leviticus, it was that bad.

The feeling that followed was an empty, gnawing hopelessness. Deep down I still very much believed in God and was sure He was watching all of this. Something got me to pick up the Bible again. I read the New Testament. There were different women there, different ideas, but I was still dwelling in these earlier conflicts. Then one night I woke up at three a.m. and thought "He rose from the dead. That's all that's important. He's alive. There's life. I have to chose life. There's always death and dissapointment and mixed messages but there's one goal and that's life."

So, do I ignore the parts of the Bible that make me uncomfortable? No. I try to go over it again, I take it in context, I try to understand. But I always keep in mind that the greatest goal, the biggest point, is life. Love. Choices. Watching a movie about Christ's death... what will that do for my soul? I've chosen life. Why did Christ die? So He could live again, and go to prepare a place for us to live again. It was all for life.

Okay so, what brought this up... I was watching CSPAN this morning and there was this guy who wrote a book about the wonderful legacy of our current president. He was talking about how he feared a "great forgetting" about what the terrorists had done and said that any president who's primary goal was not the war on terrorism would destroy our country. Education, health care, poverty, national debt, etc. would all destroy us if they took priority over the war on terrorism. We must never forget.

I'll never forget 9-11. I'll never forget the articles I read about taliban extremists hanging women for adultry. I'll never forget the crucifixion of Christ.

But if I'm going to pick a fight, I'm going to fight for life, not against death. If asked, "Would you rather live in a society with a flawed education system where people can't afford health care, or would you rather be the target of a terrorist attack?" Basically, would I rather have a good life or avoid a bad death?

I don't think the threat of a terrorist attack in Wichita, Kansas is real anyway, but even if I did I'd rather work towards having a better life instead of just protecting myself from death. Death happens. Terrorism happens. We can live our lives in fear and launch a war on terrorism or we can focus on what's important and launch a war on poverty, a war on undereducation, a war on disease.

What you do in life is more important than how you die.

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