Back in the middle of March I came across a USA Today news article entitled, “Justice Thomas: Americans Don't Sacrifice as Much.” Thomas is a U.S. Supreme Court Justice who is concerned about how self-indulgent Americans have become.
I’m not American but his words spoke to me. Today’s self-indulgence knows few boundaries and we in Canada are guilty as well. I like my little indulgences and I don’t think Justice Thomas would suggest ending them all, but am I as concerned about others as I am about myself? Am I willing to give up what I want to serve another?
In a recent conversation with someone who read my book, Searching for Love: One Woman’s Spiritual Journey through Same-Sex Attraction, I was asked why I was willing to go through so much pain. Why not grab hold of that for which my heart longed and enjoy some happiness? The answer I should have given didn’t come to me until later: We need to live for something higher than our own well-being and happiness.
I believe this is what Justice Thomas was trying to communicate to those listening. How well am I living that truth? Yes, I made the sacrifice I describe in my book but did my willingness to sacrifice continue or do I cling to my rights and my comforts oblivious to or hardened against needs other than mine? I think of my lonely next-door neighbour, the urgent sandbagging against flooding of the Red River, my son who is bored and would love to play a table game with me. Am I willing to sacrifice in order to help?
God, please enable me in this!