Saturday, June 12, 2021

The Celebration of Hubris. . .

On Facebook some wag asked which month do the rest of the seven deadly sins get.  I hear him.  From HGTV (my personal weakness) to every business where I shop to the obligatory pronouncements from churches friendly to the movement, this is PRIDE month and they are in solidarity with their PRIDE friends.  Really?  

The reality is that this is the month of hubris -- when a very distinct but small and powerfully connected minority takes over to announce that it is out and proud and does not care what anyone else thinks.  Can this be good for us?  Is the celebration of hubris really something that needed in our culture preoccupied with what others think (that is sarcasm, in case you missed it)?  The movement fits in every nicely in a society in which personal feelings dictate reality, personal offense rewrites history, and personal desire defines identity.  But in my mind, more pride is about the last thing we need.  Ours is not an age known for great sacrifice or generosity.  Ours is not a time in which concern and compassion are overly in abundance.  Just the opposite.  We have contempt for everyone and we are not afraid to show it.  Read what passes for commentary on the social media or listen to the voices of people proclaiming loudly and proudly every hidden detail of their lives.  Are we somehow lacking so in hubris that we need a month to teach us how to bear our souls and our bodies and parade ourselves down the streets into a party of self-indulgence?  Do we need a month of Mardi Gras because we have had too little time to express our wants, desires, preferences, and self-centeredness?

Maybe we should declare July the month of repentance for our pride on overload -- oh, but wait, that is the month we celebrate a freedom we make cheap by turning the liberty for which our forefathers and mothers died into license to, yes, you guessed it, to do whatever we damn well please.  Repentance will have to wait.  But it always does.  Repentance is like the family dog who waits for adults preoccupied with work and leisure and the kids preoccupied with play and leisure -- both in front of a screen.  The dog waits for the day when someone will have time to throw a ball or a stick or take a walk.  Repentance has become that waiting faithful friend -- that which means more than we give it credit and we once loved but now find simply too much trouble.

Pastors are afraid to call their people to repentance and churches are afraid to call the world to repentance.  Nobody wants to rain on our parade.  So we continue along in our months of hubris and pride, announcing in public what was once private, flaunting the desires that were once kept hidden, and releasing from shame and guilt that which was once thought to be wrong or sin.  It is a great day for the liberation of our souls from every constraint of decency, politeness, decorum, and respect.  Pride month.  Can't wait until next year!!!

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