HH and I are blessed with two jobs in an economy that guarantees no jobs – especially for a couple of English majors with graduate degrees in something as unmarketable as “Divinity.” And so – with our two jobs – we can afford to live here and pay our taxes. And we will do so happily.
Among the comments I’ve heard from helpful acquaintances:
- The taxes are high because the schools are really good. But you don’t have kids in the schools. Why would you live there?
- You know your gas taxes are the highest in the country, right? (Actually we are third, behind California and NY.)
All of us pay taxes on things we don’t like (e.g. war.)
All of us pay taxes on things we find helpful (e.g. snow plowing, street lights.)
Tax collectors were hated in First Century Palestine and we are not happy with them in this Century either. And of course nobody likes irresponsible spending and waste. But what if we considered the paying of our taxes as a spiritual practice? For the most part, our taxes take care of us and our neighbors.
In today’s political divide, can we who call ourselves followers of Jesus agree that this is one way that we – as a larger community – can care for each other? I am happy to pay taxes that serve the greater good. You?