Reflection for Today ▶️ ⏩ ⏹️
The aftermath of the Dresden Bombing, 1945 (public domain)
And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.
— Genesis 6:5-6
A verse for our times, indeed. Imagine if God were all the trees of the world, the oceans and rivers, the animals and plants, the air we breathe, the very earth itself. Such a God would indeed be repenting that it gave rise to this thing called man, which has become bent on destroying its source, its mother. The earth grieves, while evil flourishes.
But it isn't such a simple dichotomy of earth good/man bad. We are all in and of the earth, just as we are all in and of God. The hurt we do others—beings sentient or otherwise—can only hurt ourselves. And if we hurt, God hurts.
The flood. I get that. Sometimes redemption of a broken thing just isn't viable, and there are times we just need to start over, incorporating the learning from our first try, and improving as we go. It hurts to throw away our creations, but perhaps it will hurt more, and for longer, to keep patching up imperfect things, and witnessing repeated failure. But I get ahead of myself. The flood—that's a story for tomorrow. Today we focus on the hurt that led to such a response.
music Hurt, sung by Johnny Cash, from American IV: The Man Comes Around