Reflection for Today ▶️ ⏩ ⏹️
Communication Breakdown, by Patrik Šima, Czechia, 2016
Trust ye not in a friend, put ye not confidence in a guide: keep the doors of thy mouth from her that lieth in thy bosom. For the son dishonoureth the father, the daughter riseth up against her mother, the daughter in law against her mother in law; a man's enemies are the men of his own house.
— Micah 7:5-6
The book of Micah is not linear, not a simple journey from sin to redemption, but rather an iterative, cyclic structure moving through the pairings of judgment/redemption, the final chapter having perhaps the greatest condemnation of all: members of a family will rise up against one another. This represents the total breakdown of society, an almost complete godlessness. If we cannot trust our own spouse, parent, offspring or sibling, what are we left with, apart from ourselves? The answer, of course, is God. Sometimes we will only turn to God when we have nothing left, no where else to go—and when the entire fabric of society has come apart a whole nation will find itself in such a place. From great despair can now arise a small hope. All is not lost. That humankind should find itself in such a place is tragic. That God will love us still, and be there to redeem us is nothing short of miraculous.
Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? He retaineth not his anger for ever, because He delighteth in mercy. He will turn again, He will have compassion upon us; He will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea.1
If only we grew collectively wiser from such experience! Sadly, the repetition of such tragedy over the course of history indicates otherwise. Yet still, time after time, hope is kept alive, and perhaps in the end that is all that matters: that we retain hope, and find the strength of heart to try again. And again.
1 Micah 7:18-19