Luggage and non-resistance.

9:17 AM

So even though I'm not leaving for Iowa until next Wednesday evening, I am going to pack today.:) Partially because I am excited, but mostly because I am going to be pretty busy right up until we leave with a full weekend and working and such. I wonder if I will get it all done today or not. Packing has been a horrid nightmare for me ever since the airlines decided to charge for luggage. Gross. So the frugal side of me has decided I can only fly with carry-on. Which of course means I have to leave 75% of the things I'd like to take, home. Poo.

Yesterday there was quite the horrible man that came into the store. He asked if there was a bathroom and I replied, "Sorry, our bathroom is not open to the public." And he proceeded to spit and spew some of the foulest language I have ever heard, in his temper tantrum over not being able to use the bathroom. I was either too shocked to say anything, or it was my Mennonite non-resistance kicking in but I was left completely speechless as he went on and on, before storming out of the store. Grr. Of course now, a day after the fact, I can think of a list of things I'd like to say back to him, and it would've felt lovely and quite justified, but probably not very Christ-like, so perhaps it's all for the best that I didn't. Funny though, how it doesn't feel that way.

While I'm on the topic, I have been very frustrated lately with the whole theory of non-resistance, because I think it is very easy to sit here and claim our non-resistant beliefs while being so isolated from any actual contact or involvement with war. I mean, how many of us actually have to ever face persecution? Or go to bed with the fear that one of our children might be taken, or our wives ravaged?
I struggle with the fact that we claim we are part of a Heavenly kingdom (which is true) and that requires that we refrain participation in the protection of people in this earthly kingdom.
I think most Christians (or Mennonites for that matter) that you would ask, would say they can't help but feel that the people who brought down the terrorists and caused the plane to crash, preventing further thousands from losing their lives, did the right thing. However, if you LITERALLY translate our non-resistant beliefs, then if that plane had been full of Mennonites, no one would have lifted a finger. Am I wrong?
In discussing this with my husband and some other Smuckers the other day, I came to the conclusion that we, claiming to be non-resistant, are naive and hypocritical unless we first say that we are perfectly willing to be persecuted, both ourselves and our loved ones, and not do anything about it.

Feedback is welcome, I'm curious to see what the rest of you would have to say.

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  1. Aww Shelley, Rodney and I have had discussions like this often. Have you ever watched the movie 'the pianist"? There's a line in there that still haunts me when the jewish man that is being 'persecuted' calls out the christians in america for not getting involved and helping them out.
    I think about the fact today that many women and children in Africa and the middle east are being 'ravaged' and how can we as the most advanced country in the world not do something. Granted I hate war, however we live in a fallen world and until Christ is king of this earth there will be war. On a side note, it would be nice if we could figure out a way to have war where nobody would actually die. Alright you wanted my thoughts, now you got them. Stop by and see us when you're in town. ~jodi

  2. Interesting thoughts, thanks for sharing them! And we might have to take you up on that invitation when we're back there, it would be great to see you all again!

  3. I have struggled with the same thoughts, along with our lack of involvement as Mennonites in the political arena.

    I have come to the conclusion that as I have given the freedom of letting my voice be heard in this country and speak by my vote sometimes as well.
    Secondly, that although I would never be able to kill someone ie. sending them into hell for all eternity, I think I would be able to hurt someone very badly if they were attacking someone I love. ;-) I dunno that's probably not a very Mennonite thing to say but I'm just being honest. :-) I have many questions that are so unanswered on this subject...


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