Why the Halfling?

Last weekend we headed to the Northern part of the Bighorn Mountains to camp. We were going to set up camp on the pass and then check out the Bighorn Canyon on the west side of the mountains the next day. We knew rain was in the forecast for Saturday, but it came a day early and we got rained on before we could even set up camp. We didn’t want to stay in a hotel so we were forced to go North into Montana where we found a little 10×10 foot cabin at a campground. It kept us warm and dry and landed us right next to the site of Custer’s last stand. We went to check it out and I’m glad we did. It was an epic battle, one we’ve all heard stories about. Standing there, looking out over the land where it all went down made it come to life somehow. There were markers where the soldiers had fallen and a memorial telling the story of both sides. I think I’ve always sided with natives, maybe because of the way history was presented to me, or maybe it’s my tendency to side with the underdog, or my heart’s inner demand for justice, I don’t know. Maybe all of the above. I think everyone probably sees it with a different slant. I look at the battle and feel bad for the U.S. soldiers who were outnumbered at least five to one, led into a battle they may or may not have been on board with, and see bravery. I look at the leadership and see a lot of arrogance and possibly some stupidity. I think about the natives defending their homeland, their way of life and can’t find it in my heart to blame them for fighting back. But then they took it to the next level and saw red, so to speak. Instead of simply defending their homeland, they viciously tortured and annihilated even the wounded soldiers left on the field. So who was right and who was wrong? I think the U.S. wronged the Natives for sure. But then the natives wronged them back. So was anyone right in the end? Which leads my thoughts to more current events. I usually stay away from politics but is that even possible today? This whole immigration thing is a mess and I refuse to take a side without fully understanding the truths behind it all. What I do see is parents trying to protect their kids, to provide a better life for them, in some cases trying to save their lives. I see border patrol officers being given an impossible task and trying to do their best to help people while upholding the law. I see a President doing his best to secure our nations borders. I’m not one of those people that expects a government to run like a church. I’m a missionary at heart, but I’m not naïve enough to think that opening our borders will produce the results we might hope for. Most nations have laws and consequences regarding illegal entry. No  matter where you are, if you break the law, there are consequences. If me and my kids are homeless and starving and I steal food or break into a building for shelter, we could also face separation. Am I saying what is happening is right? No. Am I saying it’s wrong? No. I think there are two sides to every conflict, neither one completely in the right or completely in the wrong. But sitting back, self-righteously judging the leadership, is futile. Is all our protesting and pointing fingers and slandering really going to change anything for the better?  There is a moment in the movie The Hobbit that keeps floating around in my head. Gandalf is asked why he chose the “halfling” (Bilbo Baggins) and he replies; “I do not know. Saruman (a different wizard) believes that it is only a great power that can hold evil in check, but that is not what I have found. I found it is the small things, everyday deeds of ordinary folk, that keep the darkness at bay. Simple acts of kindness and love.” I hear a lot of Christians today bemoaning the state of our country, scared of what our children will face as adults, acting like evil is stronger than good, waiting on the powers that be to turn the tide and “fix” all the world’s problems. But what if that’s not the Father’s plan? What if His plan is more grassroot, more covert? What if we hold more power than we realize? What if He intends for us to play a bigger role than we realize? What if every true believer in the world stepped out of their comfort zone and actually loved on someone regardless of cost or convenience? What if we all did our part to bring heaven to earth, on a daily basis, in the small things. What if we could keep the darkness at bay? What would make a bigger impact on the world: demanding that the higher powers “fix” something we deem wrong, or every Christian loving on the people who come across their paths every day? I’m not saying to ignore current issues. By all means, vote to change policy, pray to change hearts, and take action where you can. But let’s not forget to step a little farther outside our comfort zone to fight darkness with light. Give the wet hitchhiker a ride even if it’s uncomfortable, babysit for the single mom even if her kids seem unruly, sit and listen to someone whose lonely, make eye contact with people when you smile, mean it when you ask people how they are, cut the grass, pay the tab, make a meal for someone, or better yet, invite them over for one. Maybe, just maybe, the battle for middle earth CAN be won with kindness and courage. 😉

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6 Comments

  1. Thank you for this brilliant post! Yesterday I shared your words with my (84 yr old) Dad during our teatime -he’s a Brit so 4-5pm is ALWAY set aside for tea; because, a cup of tea fixes everything! 😉 He listened intently as I read…which led to a really healthy (God focused) conversation. He told me to tell you “thank you” for your perspective. Then he said, “I like your friend”. 🙂 Thought you might like to know that your thoughtful words hit their mark! By the way, if I have not mentioned it before, I’m thoroughly enjoying your adventure…thank you for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Well put, Kjersti! I’ve been struggling with putting my thoughts into words and this is exactly how I feel! I see both sides and I don’t know if there’s an easy fix, but I’m tired of the division! So, I will love those put in my path and pray for our leaders and be involved where I feel led! Thanks for sharing your journey!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow! You communicate so well the thoughts that I have! You write beautifully.
    Thank you for sharing this. For sharing your heart. Blessings to you and your family. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

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