There was a Tsunami that hit Japan last week if you didn't notice. It was pretty bad. Lots of people died. The country has nearly been destroyed. From what I read and see in the news, its total devastation.
Interesting side note here- there has been little to no looting in the aftermath of the destruction tsunami by the Japanese people. Apparently they have some sort of societal norm of not taking things that aren't theirs in times of emergency and chaos.
I can't recall this being the norm here in the ol' US of A. The first events that come to my mind are Katrina, Andrew and the LA Riots of the 90s. When things go sideways in America- there are typically thousands of opportunists that begin to break into stores and loot anything they can. Usually they are not just taking diapers and water but TVs and clothes and anything else of value they can get for free.
I'm scratching my head this morning trying to figure it out. In the Seattle Times this morning an article describes the Japanese psyche- "One is "shikata ga nai," which roughly translates as "it can't be helped," and is a common reaction to situations beyond one's control. The other is "gaman," considered a virtue. It means to be patient and persevere in the face of suffering."
My Friend Abraham told me that his Japanese father used to say "the tallest blade of grass gets cut".
Not necessarily American ideals, are they?
Currently, America is more like the ideals of Ricky Bobby from Talledega Nights who said "If you're not first, you're last".
I'm no social scientist. I don't think we should become everything Japan is. But I do wonder- why is there no looting in Japan when there is always looting in America?
Listen, I love America. I'm proud to be an American. But I think that there are alot of selfish self serving people in America that have little to no regard for the thoughts, feelings and actions of other people and that's not a good thing. Yes, we can't be all things to all people, but for me, in my sphere of influence, I can choose to be nice to the people around me. I can follow laws and not take what isn't mine. I can try to make someone elses day better by giving a bit of myself.
Think about it next time you're in a situation that seems dire when you think you wont get what you want.
Because here's the bottom line- people live in fear of not getting taken care of so they feel as though they must do it at the expense of others. This is not true. God knows that is going on. Matthew 6:8- "your Father knows what you need before you ask him". Rest in that today.
Don't be a looter. Don't be a person that has to shove to the front of every line. Don't live in fear of not getting yours.