While reading Humankind: A Hopeful History by Rutger Bregman I was reminded of the capacity for human goodness. Frankly, it isn’t just that we are capable of decency and goodness, we were created for it. In the garden, Genesis 1, God looks at all creation and calls it good, with one exception, Adam and Eve, whom God calls very good.
Of course, sin enters the human experience in Genesis 3, which means we also have the capacity for evil. There is a significant difference however in how we are created versus how we often choose to act. I worry that too many people understand their nature based on news headlines rather than the theology found in the creation story. The news headlines are filled with stories of violence, greed and distrust. The creation story talks about relationship, beauty and finds full reconciliation in the life, death and resurrection of Christ.
Perhaps we need to be reminded of God’s love for us, and the love we are expected to show others. This comes from our Genesis 1 posture. Don’t lose sight of God’s very goodness in you, your neighbors and the neighbors you haven’t met yet.