Think of Them, and Stave Off Despair


It is hard to live in wicked times. The news of the world brings new and insidious developments every day, it seems. Whether we are speaking of open aggression, such as seen in Ukraine, or more subtle turns to the worse, such as the contamination of women's crimes statistics by men's, paints the picture of a losing battle for those who crave both sanity, a just peace, and safeguarding of the innocent.

A little quote came across my desk today that I very much appreciated. It gave some solace to my soul, and I thought I would share it with you. It is by the American author Anne Rice, known primarily for her vampire novels. (Yes, a bit ironic, that.)

"Think of the thousands... who rise each day and go to sleep without ever thinking evil or doing evil, whose hearts are set upon their wives, their husbands, their fathers and mothers, their children, upon the harvest and the spring rain and the new wine and the new moon. Think of them in every land and every language... think of ... how they turn from pain and misery and injustice."

Brilliant, that. And I would hope there were more than thousands--I would hope there are hundreds of thousands, or even millions who turn from evil and try to do good, or at least do no evil, the day long. Such a thought brings sunshine into my soul. I can only imagine Heaven lingers over those individuals, and those homes, in respite from the darkness elsewhere.

And yet the Bible says that at the time God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, Abraham was down to bargaining with God in terms of a couple of handfuls of individuals who remained righteous in those cities. A couple of handfuls. Might one day those hundreds of thousands or millions get down to a couple of handfuls in our time?

Maybe they already are. When I think of the ubiquity of porn use, how many men are there really who are untainted by this scourge? And today the Lancet published a global study estimating that 27% of young adult women have been physically or sexually assaulted by an intimate partner. And then I see images of the most sophisticated fashion, and it looks like this:























And then I feel despair once more . . . .

Do you suppose the righteous in Sodom and Gomorrah prayed for the evil around them to be destroyed? Did they pray to escape it? These questions linger in my mind. I wish there were a "how-to" manual to be those couple of handfuls.