Ordinary Sunday 13, 2nd July 2017 -Vicar’s Reflection
I love the bucket fountain in the Cuba Mall in Wellington. It is ugly, noisy and splashy but it reminds me that small actions can have a cascading effect. So it is with the story of Abraham and Isaac on the mountain. It appals us that human sacrifice was part of the Bible story. Yet that story led to the prophets teachings of God’s love for every human person and to this practice being condemned. St Paul in Romans transforms it into offering ourselves as a living sacrifice (Romans 12.1). To devote our life and energy into making a positive and loving difference in our lives and our world; to no longer be slaves to selfishness, but to dedicate our lives to setting right injustices, healing the wounded and nurturing goodness (Romans 6). Sadly, we still practice human sacrifice. When people lose their homes, livelihoods and lives because of a war. Or when efficiency or profit are more important than jobs. It is important for an economy or a company and even a church to run efficiently and not waste valuable resources. People are valuable too. The effects of economic or political decisions on people must be the first thought not the last. Governments must protect the safety and security of their citizens, but not by blowing up the citizens of other countries. Finding the right balance is difficult. Every small act of kindness and consideration can tip the balance towards goodness.