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Leaving the Shire

We were watching Fellowship of the Ring tonight and I couldn’t help but think, “I want to leave the Shire.” The Shire is beautiful and happy and wonderful. The problem is that the hobbits who live there are oblivious to the crisis going on outside their manicured village. There is great evil lurking in the lands outside their borders. People are suffering not too far away, but they neither see nor hear. They enjoy their oblivion; what they don’t know can’t hurt them. The problem is that the are wrong. Their lives may escape the evil longer than other places, but it will come. Those who dare leave the Shire to face these evils may be mocked, misunderstood, and criticized, but they are the ones who will ultimately save their homeland.  Leaving is hard. The comforts of the good life keep us from wanting to take risks even when we know their are others who are suffering. Yet once we know what is happening outside our comfortable lives we must chose. The other really does matter. And eventually the crisis will come to our doorstep. By the time it comes to us how great will it have grown? Who will be left to fight?  We must risk it all for the calling, for others, for ourselves. We must forsake the comforts for the cause. We must love Good more than nice. We must.

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