It’s been popularly reported that President Obama’s Chief of Staff has a defined philosophy when it comes to the economic recession. Namely, to never waste a crisis. The idea behind this theory is that a crisis affords one an opportunity to accomplish something that wouldn’t be possible if everything was “normal.” Emergencies create panic, panic creates a heighten need of security, and this heightened need creates the chance for someone to step in and be the hero. Crisis, in other words, allows people to accomplish what might have otherwise been impossible in order to provide a semblance of peace.
Now, assuming that the philosophy has some veracity to it, the question then what is its significance outside the world of politics? For Christians, we have to recognize that it’s often when people are in the most need, i.e. in their own personal critical state of affairs, that they look for answers. Just like the economic recession has caused many to look to our nation’s leaders for solutions, individual’s crisis prompts people to find what that which can be depended on. Someone’s personal crisis then becomes an opportunity to minister to them, to show them the only true Foundation, and to bring them to the Rock that doesn’t move.
However, the other lesson to be learned, is that our commitment to doing the right thing shouldn’t be contingent upon people’s response to it. I’m sure that there were many people who were thrilled to obtain mortgages that they couldn’t afford when the economy was in stellar shape. However, it doesn’t mean that offering them was the right thing to do. In other words, a crisis might bring an opportunity but better to have the right foundation in place to weather the crisis with, rather than building in the midst of a storm. A lot of times when things are going great, we don’t consider speaking to someone about Jesus. We wait until the crisis hits, and they feel the need for answers. But in doing so, we’re helping to ensure that they don’t have the power of Christ to navigate through life’s trials and travails. People may not like hearing about their lack of security when everything seems good, but just because they don’t want to hear it, doesn’t mean we shouldn’t sound the alarm.
A crisis may equal an opportunity. But instead of waiting for the opportunity, why don’t we make our own? It may be harder for us, but it is the more caring thing for the other and as Christians, shouldn’t that be our more important concern?