restoring our biblical and constitutional foundations


Reaching for the Moon

 David Alan Black 

“Reaching for the moon” used to be a figure of speech for trying to attain the impossible. At one time it was an expression of opprobrium, but nowadays it’s become quite respectable. Today it is perfectly acceptable to aim at the stars while ignoring the greatest of all objectives.

People tend to fall into one of three categories. Some have no goals at all; others have the wrong goals; and still others become so preoccupied with lesser goals that they fall short of the main objective. The means become an end, and because of their fixation on the good they fall short of the best. President Bush seems to fall into this latter category.

He has a chosen a goal that is entirely unattainable. Defeating “terrorism” will keep him occupied from here to doomsday. Yet it is merely a tantalizing will-o’-the-wisp, forever dancing just ahead of us. America can just as easily fight terrorism as it can fight hubris. Terrorists are real people who live in actual places and who can be defeated by normal means, but terrorism is a concept – and, in my opinion, much too vague a concept to launch a “war” against, don’t you think? It is a smokescreen to advance the president’s agenda of world democratization, at the point of a bayonet mind you. And woe betide whatever feeble resistance might arise against our government’s increasingly belligerent moves. After all, “They’re keeping us safe from terrorism!”

All this reminds me of that old film “Reaching for the Moon,” starring Douglas Fairbanks. Fairbanks is a factory office worker who daydreams about being in the company of kings. His workmates regard him as – well, a likeable twit. One morning he wakes up to find he’s the only surviving relative of a tiny European country’s monarchy. He’s about to be crowned king! But the evil “Black Boris” has other ideas. Shades of our own beloved G.W.! Thrust into britches that are clearly too big for him, he nevertheless struts along, pursuing his goal of saving the universe from Osama & Co., defiant of all those big Black Borises that are out to get him.

I realize it is not our main business to condemn and denounce organized iniquity, although that has its place and we have almost stopped doing that. But we certainly should be willing to learn from negative examples. Like Jesus’ disciples, it’s quite natural that we should pray, “Lord, grant us that we may sit, one on thy right hand, and the other on thy left hand, in thy glory.” We are all George Bushes more or less, in a mad scramble for top seats in this old world. Self-promoters we are. We do not blush to even ask for the best seats in heaven. Problem is, when we seek after the highest seats, we tend to get demoted real quick. That’s how the Lord always works (1 Peter 5:6).

So let’s get busy serving and let the Lord take care of the seating arrangements. Meanwhile, may God deliver us from reaching for the moon!

December 13, 2004

David Alan Black is the editor of He is the author of Why I Stopped Listening to Rush and numerous other books.

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