In this economy I am not entirely without sympathy for Bendontworkherenomore and I will admit that I was a bit hard on him last week.
So, as an act of contrition (being the good ex-Catholic that I am), I set about looking for a new job for Ben. Let’s face it, without a completed college education the better think tanks just aren’t going to come a callin’. Even a degree from Goucher will trump an incomplete from William & Mary (…and by the way, did you know Ben even stole from the Pantload? Isn’t that like taking dating tips from Brent Baker?) and pretty much every thing Ben writes from this point forward is going to go under the microscope which is going to make a writing gig difficult to obtain. Even David Horowitz has standards.
Hahahahahaha…oh shit, I crack myself up sometimes. Oh, sweet Jesus….
Anyway, I asked myself what kind of company actually lives the values that Ben professes to believe?
Many people today are desperately searching for deeper meaning in this Christmas. Now, more than ever, they recognize they need it, not just for themselves or those they love. They need it for the sake of the thousands of chairs that will sit empty on Christmas Day.
For me, Christmas has always been about the bonds of family. As tied up in the memories of Christ’s birth as it has been, Christmas has always marked a chance to let any petty arguments and clashes fade away in unity. Prayer, reciting Luke 2, lighting the advent candles — I realized as I was driving towards home that I welcomed the chance to play football with my younger brother nearly as much as those traditional reminders of the babe in the manger. Thus far, the reunion has not disappointed. My brother had set up his Nintendo with a “Christmas” match ready for us both, with Mary, Joseph, The Babe, The Shepherds, and the Beasts of the Field as our teammates.
Perhaps it is not just the non-Christian that is searching for meaning. Perhaps it is those of us Christians as well, who have let something, anything, even a thing as precious as family prevent us from acknowledging the truth.
The meaning of Christmas this year is about two things. It is dedicated to the memory of those who are not with us — and the fulfilled promise of reconciliation from the One who never leaves us, nor forsakes us. It is a solemn day. It is a day of rejoicing. It is holy.
Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the Lutheran pastor and martyr under the tyranny of the Third Reich, wrote against and lived against the “cheap grace that devalues sin and forgiveness alike.”
“Cheap grace means grace as a doctrine, a principle, a system. It means forgiveness of sins proclaimed as a general truth, the Love of God taught as the ‘Christian conception’ of God … Cheap grace is the grace we bestow on ourselves. Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without repentance … grace without discipleship, grace without the cross, grace without Jesus Christ.”
By now you’re probably suffering from irony overload so we’ll pause here to let it pass.
hmmmmm….hmmmm…..Beat on the brat with a baseball bat….Oh yeah, oh yeah, uh-oh…What can you do? What can you do? With a brat like that–
Okay. All better now? Onward and upward, I always say. Actually I don’t always say that. I always say, “Jesus. Don’t you have a mirror in your house?”, but for the purposes of this post we’ll pretend that I say uplifting things like, ‘onward and upward‘.
Onward and upward. So I’m looking for a job for Ben when I come across these guys whose “statement of corporate purpose” specifically says:
…we exist “to glorify God by being a faithful steward of all that is entrusted to us and to have a positive influence on all who come in contact with (Ben’s new employer).”
Tomorrow is Monday morning, Ben. Be on time. Wear a tie and, for God’s sake, don’t lie on your application.