I am constantly struggling to overcome my deep selfish tendencies. Sometimes I ignore them hoping that in that way I am not thinking of myself and that they will disappear. But then, they rear their ugly heads again. And once again, my selfishness hurts others.
It obviously does not work to ignore my problems. Ignoring problems does not make them go away. Katongole, in his book The Sacrifice of Africa, quotes Basil Davidson who says of the social struggles in Africa that they were “smuggled out of hearing or censored out of sight.” Uganda, today, is fighting to discover the best approach, as an independent country, to break free of its social struggles.
I am still having difficulty deciphering how I should specifically be responding to the struggles I saw in Uganda. I know that I have been called to make changes in my life so that I am actively loving my neighbors. Not responding when I am made aware of problems within my own life or saying that I am going to change but never acting on it, is a terrible cycle to throw myself into.
No longer passively allowing myself to make selfish decisions would result in a greater capacity to answer the call to love others. And by deeply and genuinely loving others, perhaps I will be pushed further from the doing nothing end of the spectrum into doing something. For doing something is better than nothing. “Smuggling and censoring” what needs to be changed in our individual lives and what needs to be changed within the world is doing nothing. And doing nothing is not loving.
*The fact that I am posting this while sitting in Starbucks is enough to write about. Conscious making decisions is vital to changing my actions.