Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Wetback Says "Gracias a Dios"


I just got through watching Wetback: The Undocumented Documentary and I found myself shouting at the TV because throughout the documentary the people kept talking about how they were "thankful to God" or if this was "God's will" then they were OK with it.

A guy with NO FUCKING LEGS because the train he was trying to jump on ran him over said something like "If this is God's will then I will just have to live with it." Um...hello! You have NO FUCKING LEGS!

Was it GOD'S WILL to put him in poverty so bad that he decided to risk his life to leave his country and travel thousands of miles to try to live the "AMERICAN DREAM"????

What's that? Oh, He works in mysterious ways! Yeah, that's it.

5 comments:

pursuitofmeaning said...

Copied directly from my devotional this morning:

Read Esther 2:1--7

God's presence is not as intriguing as His absence. His voice is not as eloquent as His silence. Who of us has not longed for a word from God, searched for a glimpse of His power, or yearned for the reassurance of His presence, only to feel that He seems absent for the moment? Distant. Preoccupied. Maybe even unconcerned. Yet later, we realize how very present He was all along.

Though God may at times seem distant, and though He is invisible to us, He is always invincible. This is the main lesson of the book of Esther. Though absent by name from the pages of this particular book of Jewish history, God is present in every scene and in the movement of every event, until He ultimately and finally brings everything to a marvelous climax as He proves Himself Lord of His people, the Jews.

Mordecai was a descendant of one of those exiled Jews. He was a godly man, and his most significant role was his relationship to Esther.

Esther, which is this young woman's Persian name, means "star." This seems appropriate, since she is truly the star of the show, the heroine of the story. The immortal, invisible, all-wise hand of God is working behind the scenes, hidden from human eyes. Only such a gracious and all-knowing Being would have His hand on some forgotten orphan, a little girl who had lost her mother and father and was left to be raised by her cousin Mordecai.

There is a beautiful message here for anyone who has ever experienced brokenness, for anyone who has ever been crushed by life, for anyone who has ever felt that his past is so discolored, so disjointed, so fractured that there is no way in the world God can make reason and meaning out of it. We are going to learn some unforgettable lessons from Esther. Here was a little girl who must have cried her heart out at the death of her parents, bereft and orphaned, yet who, years later, would become key to the very survival of her people, the Jews. God and God alone can do such things---He, in fact, does do such things, working silently and invisibly behind the events of history.

And he is working quietly behind the scenes of your life too.

Doubting Foo said...

You are counting the "hits" and ignoring the "misses". For every Esther there is out there I will give you 5 people who didn't see some light at the end of the tunnel. The guy I was referring to lost ALL chance of supporting his family. They were in New Jersey and he called his wife and told her to just go on with her life because he couldn't make it. He had to return to his parent's home.

If you follow the lives of the poor and downtrodden MILLIONS that are on Earth now you will not find a magical ending to their story. You will find suffering and more suffering until their lives end without a single bit of help in the end from God.

I wish it were the way you described it. I wish all people could experience something wonderful that helps them or their people. But life on this world isn't like that and poetic stories like the book of Esther won't make it any better for those poor people.

pursuitofmeaning said...

You are correct that we live in a fallen world where there is a lot of misery.

But the problem is not really the misery as Corrie ten Boom has proved:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corrie_ten_Boom

The problem is meaning - hence my blog. If there is meaning to the suffering we feel better about the suffering. If there is no meaning - we cannot endure anything - not even riches and comfort.

I believe there are many rich people that do not even have 1% of the joy Corrie found in spite of her circumstances.

Yet I admit even after saying that and with understanding the theology - sometimes I look at the reality of it all and it is gruesome to behold.

There are billions dying and lest we forget death is a result of sin so unless we believe in God (I can only speak for Christianity and that not even very well) - yes it will truly be meaningless.

Doubting Foo said...

To quote Corrie ten Boom from the wiki article you reference:
For a long moment we grasped each other's hands, the former guard and the former prisoner. I had never known God's love so intensely as I did then.

I'm glad she had a chance to know God's love so intensely but you can't say that about the millions of other Jews who didn't survive and didn't have the chance to hold their captor's hand. Were they holding the hand of God when the gasses killed them or were they asking God why?

If the purpose of our life on this planet is just to bide time until we get to Heaven then what kind of purpose is that? To what end? You cannot with a rational mind think that and think it is a good idea and a good thing.

Life is full of pain as well as joy. But the major suffering that is going on is not the fault of God because God does not exist. We must do our best to ensure a better world for our children, not wait idly for the afterlife.

Epicurus wondered about these things over 2300 years ago:
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent. Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil? Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?

pursuitofmeaning said...

And that is one of the most fundamental questions: If God exist - why does he allow suffering to persists?

This problem is explored at length by C.S Lewis in The Problem with Pain.

There are also interesting article at http://www.catholiceducation.org/articles/apologetics/ap0032.html
(yeah I know - it is a catholic source :-) )