Anglican Diocese of Armidale

The Anglican Diocese of Armidale exists to glorify God by introducing people to Jesus and helping them home to heaven.

 

In Focus

Confusion

Monday, November 19, 2018

“Confusion” is a word we all understand but a reality that is terribly hard to live with.

Take the headline that reads, “Revived ‘Zoe’s law’ Bill a risk to women’s abortion rights, warns pro-choice groups.” The comments by women’s and legal groups argue that this is, “a real risk to women’s reproductive rights.” As a reader I can’t help but see the quandary we are in. To defend a woman’s right to abort by choice is a defence in conflict with the justice desired by the parent of an unborn child killed by another’s illegal actions. To defend a woman’s rights in such circumstances allows the drunk driver relief from prosecution and makes the pro-choice defence of women’s rights seem callous in the context.

Interestingly, in a 2GB interview, Ray Hadley and the mother who lost her child to a drug affected driver, both declared themselves to be pro- choice. As a listener I couldn’t help feeling a sense of confusion. The interview seemed to be suggesting that if you want the baby then it should have legal status if killed by a drunk, but if it is not wanted then that legal status would not apply. I think that means that the life of a child is to be determined by a person’s wants. In such a context how does government make a decision? Confusion reigns supreme and is typified by a Premier who, confused by the issue, the factions, the voters and her ambitions, defers making a decision. Of course none of us are confused as to the nature of leadership or the lack of it in such moments. 

If only there was some absolute we could turn to for guidance! It makes me want to reintroduce God’s mind on the matter to remove the confusion.

The evening news is often bewildering. The coverage of an event in Melbourne protesting that the wearing of provocative clothes is not an invitation for sexual harassment suggested a little confusion.  Harassment is always the action of a selfish individual who cannot, will not and does not respect the boundaries of others. What a person wears is never a permission to harassment and no one should be confused about that. However, what is confusing is protestors wearing, or almost not wearing, what they know to be provocative but failing to understand that. There is nothing confusing about their focus on self but it is confusing how anyone could become an adult and not realise how one’s visual appearance can unfortunately prompt a response in others. I have to wonder if seeing the provocative nature of that march, parents or passers-by felt sexually harassed themselves. Such is the confusion, you would be right to doubt whether the marchers ever considered others in their actions.

I will admit to living in a confusing world. The one common denominator in the confusion is our human identity and the self-centred nature of it, with its demands for rights without the exercise of responsibilities. We live in the “I Want” age and all the confusing conflicts that come with that. I can have my iPhone, iPad, iWorld in which I can join the iProtest iMarch but in this world the “we” of community is irrelevant. To avoid confusion, the outcome of this “I want” age will be isolation, loneliness and the kind of jealousies, bitterness and hatreds that come with it.

You have to be a very confused person not to see that we are the problem and that we have a problem which, if not addressed, will destroy us all.

Perhaps when the problems are sufficient and we tire of ourselves we will look for a saviour who is not full of himself, a saviour who, in the face of our selfishness, did not fight for his rights but humbled himself in obedience to God and, from the Cross on which he died, accepted the responsibility for all our sins to offer us God’s forgiveness and fresh start. That is a promise you need never be confused about.