The fire department in a rural town of Obion County, Tennessee last week allowed a house to burn to the ground, because its owner did not pay a $75 annual fee to the county for fire protection.
To add fuel to the fire (no pun intended), the mayor of the Tennessee town said, "If owners don't pay, they're out of luck."
I find the attitude of the firefighters and the mayor to be repulsive and inhumane in this situation.
How can man be so cruel and heartless to his fellow man to allow his home to burn down? The owner even agreed to pay the firefighters whatever was necessary to extinguish the flames, but they still refused to do so. As for the mayor, he was about as empathetic as a hungry lion.
What has become of our Christian values? One of Christ's most important teachings -- perhaps even His most important teaching -- was to love our neighbors. What kind of neighborly love are these firefighters and this mayor conveying? The fact is that they are really not conveying love, but rather hatred and indifference.
Unfortunately, our Christian values have been lost for several decades, dating as far back as the early 1960s. If you are old enough, you may recall the hippie anti-establishment generation that became so popular in the 1960s.
The teenage and early-twenty generation of that era was allowed to do just about anything that it wanted. It would take over college administration buildings and remain in them -- sometimes for several weeks -- until its demands were met. It protested against the Vietnam War so vehemently, that the United States pulled its troops out of Vietnam, thus resulting in America losing the first war in its history.
This self-centered "me generation" has had a significant impact on American society right up to the present time. Today, many Americans couldn't care less about their fellow man, but only care about themselves. Their attitude is, if someone's house is burning down, I don't care -- as long as it isn't my house.
Moreover, many Americans have replaced the worship of Christ with self-worship. Materialism, wealth, status, influence, power are some of the things that these people prefer to "worship" today.
As for worshiping and loving Christ, most of these people claim that they just "don't have time." The fact is that they are so focused on enhancing their riches and status that they have falsely convinced themselves -- mainly through self-justifying rationalization -- that they do not need to worship Jesus, because Jesus has been good to them, and He will continue to take good care of them throughout their lives.
This is a sad attitude for Christians to have, but unfortunately it is pervading not only the United States, but also a large part of Christendom.
Perhaps one day -- especially when he acknowledges that everything he has comes from God -- man will redeem himself by showing a genuine love of Christ, a love which transcends man's own selfish interests and his indifference toward his fellow man.