Coming Home, and Why We’re Hungry for The Hunger Games

Spring break is over. I left this:

And returned to this:

It’s a lot more exotic and exciting to leave home than it is to return home. But the rightness of being returned to our Place ... don’t we know this?

Our last night in the California desert, before we boarded our first plane home to Kodiak, my 16 year old son and I (and about 7 million others) saw “The Hunger Games.” (And if you haven’t, no spoilers here.)

My longing to return home--and the heart of the movie are not so very different.  I put aside all cynicism about marketing and globalism to ask, Why will tens of millions, more, stream to this movie?

Because we are hungry, all of us, for this taste of where we really belong, and of who we truly are.

***We hunger to be someone who stands against the madness of mob rule:

Just one man, one woman can set a self-obsessed, blue-haired world on fire.

***We are hungry to see the powerless---us---change the world. How do we accomplish this? Not by ruling others, but first by ruling over ourselves. Wisdom and self-restraint (and maybe a skilled arrow or two) unleash an immeasurable force into the world.

***We are hungry to see the hideousness of “entertainment” that demeans us exposed for what it really is—the enemy of our humanness and our God-given nobility.  Even the numbest among us feel a creeping distaste for the media’s desperate attempts to catch and hold our eyes.   

***We are hungry for the exaltation of the ignored, the impoverished, the silenced ones,

And for the humbling of the powerful, the abusers, the manipulators.

***We are hungry for the truth of who we really are: not a craven  crowd entertaining ourselves to death: 

---but people made in the Imago Dei, each one, spirit and body, filled with the very breath of God.

The world of "The Hunger Games" is disturbingly close to our own.  And yet within it, we find a way to live rightly and purely, a way to carry love and to make a home among violence and cruelty, even if it should cost our lives.  

My hunger is satisfied--for now. 

And yours?