WHEN “SUDDENLY” IS UPON US
Consider a conversation from Ernest Hemingway’s book “The Sun Also Rises”:
“How did you go bankrupt?” Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.”
This piece of wisdom portrays an astoundingly universal pattern. It helps us to understand fences that have fallen over, marriages that have gone bad, and human lives that have ended in empty failure. It accurately speaks to the decline and fall of the Roman Empire, and it explains that sick feeling that all of us who love this nation are beginning to feel. It’s that gut feeling that say’s “it’s too late”.
This is real. It’s happening right before our eyes. THE FREEDOM… that was so hard to win, and cost so much blood and treasure to keep… the FREEDOM that has hung in the balance as generations of Americans struggled with the depth of commitment that was thrust upon them… the FREEDOM that, like life itself, “is but a vapor”, and yet, in some strange and abstract way, is the center of ALL WE KNOW… is dying. THE FREEDOM IS DYING! OUR FREEDOM is dying!
OH GOD WHAT HAVE WE DONE?
We waited too long… “SUDDENLY” is upon us… and tears are all we have…
By the rivers of Babylon,
There we sat down, yea, we wept when we remembered Zion.
We hung our harps upon the willows in the midst of it.
For those who carried us away captive demanded a song,
And those who plundered us required of us mirth,
Saying, “Sing us one of the songs of Zion!”