Our Misplaced Dreams

Isaiah 9:6 (CEB)
A child is born to us, a son is given to us,
and authority will be on his shoulders.
He will be named
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.

Christmas from the Back Side, p.23
We humans have always dreamed of a world of such perfection. In truth, it’s the kind of dream that keeps our political systems going. Those of us in democracies keep thinking we’ll get it in the next election. In other political systems, there’s always a ferment, even if deeply submerged, of hopes for some sort of revolution, some overturning of the old order that will make a new world possible. Plato envisioned it in his Republic, the English nobles with their Magna Carta, the Pilgrims with their dream of a city set upon a hill. Every political convention, however flawed it may be, is still informed by something of this wondrous dream of a better political establishment, and, from it, a better world. But of course all these dreams are flawed, because those of us who implement them are sinners. We need the One described in Isaiah’s vision.

—J. Ellsworth Kalas, Christmas from the Backside

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