There is a price to be paid for doing it-- and for doing it the way we do it. Whatever "it" is. Democracy carries a price tag. "Freedom isn't free," as the popular catch phrase goes, though the people saying it rarely apply it to themselves. It applies to wearing masks during pandemics as much as it applies to serving in the armed forces during times of war and times of peace. It means doing our part to serve democracy to the best of our ability around the clock. Democracy is Freedom/Liberty! Justice! Equality! Truth! Too many people think democracy is making as much money as you can, as fast as you can, any way you can. They make a big deal about "Standing For The Flag," without standing for the things The Flag stands for-- Freedom/Liberty! Justice! Equality! Truth! They want to be free to do whatever they want, when they feel like it, for as long as they feel like it, without being bound to anything by being free. Freedom isn't free. Only those who are grown up, and growing up, have what it takes to pay the price of freedom. "We pay the price to ride the ride." Tell some people that and they don't want democracy any longer. They want nothing to interfere with their ability to live their life the way they want to live it, no strings attached. No unwanted consequences! No unwanted implications! No unwanted anything! They want the freedom to have what they want without paying any price at all. Freedom isn't free. Tell them that for me, please. They quit talking to me years ago.
Jesus had a plan. So did John the Baptist. It was the same plan. It called for the reformation of religion as it was being practiced, and society as it was being done. They were missing a plan for the implementation of their plan, and had no way to negotiate its adoption by the controlling powers of their day, which "disappeared" them the way authoritarian regimes have "disappeared" opposition throughout the ages. And that was that. Life went on the way life always goes on, tilted toward the rich and powerful, and away from everyone else. Integrity and good faith, compassion, kindness, justice, equality and truth have such a hard time of it in every generation. You would think they would all give up and throw in with greed and ruthlessness-- which somehow manage to rule the day, every day. It is a strange world in which people pay homage to "Liberty and Justice for All," and live in ways which deny liberty and justice to all who aren't deserving the way the favored ones define "deserving." And there has always been a voice crying out: "In the wilderness of this world, Prepare The Way Of The Lord Of Liberty! Justice! Equality! Truth!" The idea won't go away, and its realization is always as far away as ever. What do you make of that? How do we implement the plan for "Liberty and Justice for All" within the "Might Makes Right" nature of the world as it is? How do we get everyone on board in doing the right thing in the right way at the right time moment by moment in each situation as it arises, no matter what, all our life long? How do we even get ourselves to do it-- whether anyone else joins us or not?
What is your art? Your specialty? Your shtick? Your joy? Your life? Seriously. What do you do best? What do you enjoy doing most? What do you have to do right-- the way it needs to be done? In what ways do you honor that? Celebrate that? In what ways do you exhibit your liege loyalty and filial piety and devotion to it? In what ways do you accord it the central place in your life, letting everything else fall into place around it, and serving it with your time and attention? If you have assigned it to the shadows, and are living your life in ways that dismiss it, discount it, disregard it, denigrate it, ignore it, you are paying a terrible price for your neglect-- and it would be a really good move for you to apologize, and give it the attention and the place in your life that it deserves. Whether there is any money in it or not. Money is not the highest value. Your heart is the highest value. If your heart isn't in what you are doing, money can't buy what you are missing out on. All you need is enough money to do what you do best, what you need to do most. Wake up and get with the program that you have rejected for too long.