16 August 2008

Goodwill

- On my last few trips into the mall, I've noticed the juniors section of some dept. stores hosting an "eco-friendly" line of clothing. I've not stopped to examine the makers labels, so I don't know if these things are made of bamboo or recycled tires or what, but the slogans emblazoned across the fronts leave me scratching my head.
"Eco-Friendly", "I Recycle" ,"Go Green!", "This Shirt Made From Recycled Fibers", "Green is the New Gold", "Run, Forests, Run!"

If I really wanted to be "green" why not save the $20 I'd spend on that brand new T-shirt, and instead pop into my local Goodwill to buy someone's perfectly good, cast-off T-shirt for $1.68? Shoot, I can buy fiveT-shirts and quietly go on with my life knowing that I did something nice for the earth.

(I especially find it odd to see these cute little numbers displayed directly beside T-shirts boldly stating, "It's All About Me," "Queen Bee," "I'm Really Kind of a BIG Deal," and "This is What COOL Looks Like."
Are we loving the planet or loving ourselves? Mixed messages in the coolness department.)


- We've been watching bits and pieces of the Olympic games on the Internet.

What is the Olympics about?
Sports. Right?
Wrong.

Imagine my surprise when the one thing my children would not let me turn off was the parade of nations. You know, it's that rather boring part of the opening ceremonies that comes after all the pizazz of the laser light show, after the wow factor of the acrobatic calligraphers and the amazing feats of 2,008 synchronized Chinese drummers.

This is the part where the athletes follow behind a Chinese escort and wave to the crowd. Usually wearing panama hats and blazers. Or baggy track suits. They murmur to each other. They wave to the crowd and snap a few pictures. They walk one lap around the track and exit. I yawn.

My kids would NOT let me turn it OFF! I couldn't believe it.

They were fascinated to see the faces of each tribe and tongue. To see the waving flags representing each language and nation. To watch the athletes joyful faces marching together in harmony down a path meant expressly for goodwill toward fellow men.

The Olympics is not about sports. Is it?


-Last night I read an article about a local couple who met and recently got married AT Goodwill Industries. Becky, 76, is a cashier. Tom, 62, is a facilities technician. They held their ceremony in one of the on-site conference rooms and timed it right in between the shift change so all their fellow Goodwill employees could attend. That made me smile.

Becky and Tom, you have my goodwill!

- I am sewing a couple of things for Christmas (already? I know, how weird) and have been contemplating the ways in which we celebrate the goodwill of the Lord toward humankind. "Goodwill" is one of those words that I've spent my life glazing over in the Christmas hymns and carols. I want to spend some time this year exploring what it means that the holy God of the universe held only GOOD will toward those who offended Him.
We're still offending Him to this day. And yet, there's no ill will to be found. Simply GOOD will toward man.

I've only grasped a thread of it.

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5 Comments:

Blogger Christina Berry said...

I read your comment on Sandra Glahn's blog and laughed aloud. My husband and I had the same discussion about the volleyball uniforms!

I'd love it if you popped over to my blog. If you have the time/desire, sign up for my infrequent, humorous newsletter. (I may soon be announcing the sale of my first novel. It's in God's hands!)

6:31 PM  
Anonymous heather said...

I wrote a blog post about the idea of being green as a fad rather than as true caring for the planet, but I haven't posted it yet. One of these days...
And I agree that the Olympics is more than sports. I watch everything on the Olympics--things that I could care less about than the sports. There's something about the immortality (or maybe I should say the true humanness) tasted in the Olympics. More on that later...
So how are you? We need to chat online sometime.

10:30 AM  
Blogger Lance said...

My personal view (stress Personal) is that the Olympics is all about unity for a night.

Then it's---my team can beat your team!

When the French relay team predicted they would "smash" the Americans, my unity card went in the shredder.

Remember Waterloo!

10:57 AM  
Blogger L.L. Barkat said...

What a fun little exercise, to weave all this together with the words "good will". But then I always knew you were fun. :)

12:48 PM  
Blogger Roberta said...

Hi Erin!
I know what you mean...All this trendy green thinking is just a moneymaker obviously.

A youth pastor once told me that the verse Peace on earth, good will toward men is actually meant to be peace on earth toward men of good will. I'll have to look that up in the greek and hebrew.

Happy schoolin" :)

8:04 PM  

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