THE NUMBING OF AMERICA
I was not aware of it in its early stages, but I began to feel its draw in the late sixties, and, more so in the early seventies.
“If it feels good, do it.”
“If you can’t be with the one you love, love the one you’re with.”
“Lucy in the sky with diamonds.”
“We don’t need no piece of paper from the city hall,
Keeping us tied and true….”
On and on and on.
A slow and gradual questioning of the morals passed to us from previous generations began to grow, and flourish, to gain acceptance in all areas of society.
Behaviors which used to be kept hidden, practiced with the hope of no one discovering, began to be accepted as lifestyle choices.
Belief in God began to fade, and honoring God was disappearing from the culture.
Our focus in life became “Please yourself; don’t worry, be happy; don’t let anyone judge you; everything is okay as long as you don’t hurt anyone; religion is the opiate of the masses….”
Our focus grew inward. We wanted what we could get to stop the pain, feel the thrill.
Sex without boundaries.
We expected moments of ecstacy to be the source of our happiness.
We had to find new and greater thrills; previously forbidden acts became the drug du jour.
We had taken the bait, believed the lie, followed the path to a paradise that turned out to be a ghetto after passing the glittery, shiny gate.
We found the gate to be locked when we tried to escape.
So we stayed.
What we used to be ashamed of, we popularized, made it all mainstream, found friends who had also settled into this lifestyle. “I’m okay, you’re okay.”
We found new ways to numb the pain, to forget the emptiness, to pretend that we were alive and “living the life.”
But, every so often, we would hear that whisper.
“Come to Me.
I will give you Life.
Come to Me.
I have a purpose for you.”
Usually, we turned up the noise, to drown out the whisper.
More numbness, to relieve the disappointments.
Some said, “I’m coming. I want what you have for me. I am Yours.”
The numbness was gone.
The pain, the sorrows, the trials, the victories, all became the essence of a life. Being alive meant feeling.
Feeling all levels of what the Life brought, gave us the ability to know love, to love, to be loved.
And to know the One who made us.