Monday, March 8, 2010

"The relentless pursuit of safety leads to uncharitable hearts, for we fear letting go of the goods that might protect us against an uncertain future. In the name of security we refuse to love our enemies, because we assume that if we do not answer violence with violence, we will be forever victimized. Because we wish to be careful, we do not open our lives to strangers, fearing that they will take advantage of our hospitality. It is fear that constricts our hearts and thus fear that makes Jesus’s ethic of risky discipleship crazy, unrealistic, and irresponsible. Yet the "virtues" of the ethic of safety — suspicion, preemption, and accumulation — turn out to be but "splendid vices" [St. Augustine’s description of Roman virtues]."

—Scott Bader-Saye, Following Jesus in a Culture of Fear