Tuesday, May 7, 2019

That No Good, Lying Wizard of Oz

Yeah, yeah. Sure, sure. "Everybody loves The Wizard of Oz." And I admit, it has long held a firm spot in my top five list of favorites.


There is one pronouncement the Wizard himself makes that is exactly the opposite of the truth.

The scene is within the Wizard's chambers. Toto has exposed "the man behind the curtain" and creative alternatives to what Dorothy's companions asked for are being handed out.

Instead of brains, Scarecrow receives a diploma. Instead of courage, the Cowardly Lion gets a medal. Instead of a heart, Tinman is given a testimonial with an accompanying heart-shaped watch.

It's what the Wizard says to conclude his time with Tinman that sets my teeth on edge:
"A heart is not judged by how much you love; but by how much you are loved by others."

I submit that the exact opposite is true. How much you are loved by others is not a tool of judgment, but a result of judgment. How much you are loved by others is a direct result of how much you love.

I'm speaking in human terms, of course. Our mortal commitment to another's well-being (i.e., our love) is very rarely unconditional. There is almost always something we are reacting or responding to that elicits such a commitment or response.

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Truth is...Yahweh may be the only person this doesn't apply to. Paul had it right when he wrote, "God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." (Romans 5:8 NIV)

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