Beautiful Souls

The NY Times Book Review today talked about a book called Beautiful Souls by Eyal Press and, in particular, about a Swiss policeman who broke the Swiss law by allowing Jewish refugees to cross the border. It struck me as I read the review that we have a tendency to focus on the people who did bad and to not pay enough attention to those who did good. The book, so the review says, talks about a number of people who decided to stand against the tide — and about the price they paid (in this world — my addition). ¬†Where do we fit the gospel into a tragedy like the Holocaust? And what was it that was different about the heroes — in Germany, in Poland, in modern-day Israel where slaughtering Palestinians seems to be OK, in Africa, and on and on. When asked, the Swiss policemen Paul Grunninger apparently said, “I could not do anything else.” I wonder at times like these whether “Christ in us” can perhaps apply to people who may not have said the right words that we seem to think necessary to be a Christian. Maybe we should recognize Christians by their deeds rather than their professions? Maybe we should acknowledge that God can choose to work through many different people? Maybe we in the church are just a tiny, little, bit arrogant when we think that WE are the only hands doing God’s work. Maybe?!

Michael