Today is sufficiently removed from the Easter Weekend to reflect, in this blogger's intellectually limited way, on the nature of sacrifice and leadership. It goes without saying that the most prominent leadership cadres in Kenya are entirely made up of politicians (elected and otherwise), business types, preachers and foreigners (wazungus, if there was any doubt). In that order. Bar an aberration or two, "sacrifice" is not the word that will describe these leaders; "leadership" is increasingly becoming a pejorative in relation to these people.
Obviously, the prevailing economic, political and cultural conditions of Palestine at the time of Christ have very little in common with those that prevail in Kenya today. But the place of religion, and religious faith, in the lives of the people are pretty similar. Into Palestine arose the man many claimed to be the Messiah that Children of Israel had been waiting for. He taught his followers many things: humility; forgiveness; compassion; love; justice; and how to die. His teachings formed the foundation of a global religious order with so many sects, cults and denominations, it is impossible to determine who are of the True Faith and who are the charlatans. But it is in how to die that the Christ demonstrated the power of leadership, accountability and responsibility: sacrifice.
Look at the leaders of today. With the advantages of telecommunications technology available to them, and an army of magpies to repeat their words, it is shocking that they are unable to inspire their audience. They have no message. They can teach nothing of note. We are rarely proud to be associated with them, be in their company. We have become caricatures of humanity. In that narrow field of achievement called politics, we have become sheep for the slaughter for the vanity of the perverted and the profane. Today's leaders speak and speak but they do not communicate. And save for the posthumous saints, none will sacrifice. All they do is take and take and take.
Many will argue that the Christ's leadership model had a fatal flaw (He ended up dead, after all); but consider this: it inspires over a billion people in the world today. It is without a doubt the greatest foundation for a religion in the history of man. Look at the philosophies of post-Industrial Age titans and stare in surprise. They may have built financial and commercial empires, and their thoughts on business acumen may be devoured by millions of MBAs, but the legacies of Rockefeller or Carnegie or Rhodes do not inspire billions to give to each other, to sacrifice for one another. They inspire millions to amass and amass and amass, even to the point of committing murder or genocide.
Today's leaders profess a love for God and for the teachings of the Christ. They profess. That's it. But when faced with choices that will require them, or their families, or their friends, to amass a little less, to give up an advantage, to give to others, or to build a fairer world, they baulk, they resist, they say, "NO!" And as the Rockefellers and Rhodeses and Carnegies and their incarnations over the centuries whisper in their ears, today's leaders conspire to lie, cheat, steal and kill in the dark; and they connive to create accomplices of us all.