Such a long Chapter leading up to JVJ spectacular escape. I suppose he thought this was OK to escape, since no-one was in danger of suffering on his behalf any longer, and he still had a girl to save – poor Cosette. What a noble purpose in life to love someone so sacrificially. But to do so, one must give up other pursuits, even other good works.
It is the lengthy pre-amble to the time of the escape that captures my attention. It was toward the end of October in the year 1823, and Hugo describes the European politics in such a way that makes me question any political view. I am surrounded by people who presume that they are right politically. And I have been there. My emotions are still there with certain parties and causes. But I now question those emotions much more because in my mid-years I am much more aware of how deceitful they are to hijack my thought process to righteous indignation for what really lay below: the party spirit.
Recent politics has forced a choice between no-good options for a Christian. The ridiculous antics of our current president divide our worshipping body. What I fear is that many cling to nationalism as if it were God Himself. People long for the good ole days which certainly had their advantages, but the post-modern atheistic tendencies of our culture has many of the hearts and unknowing minds of an ignorant people. And worse is the hateful spirit by which professed Christians hold their views with a slipping grasp on any substantive issues like paying our debts, self-sacrifice, and caring for the poor. What these believers find in their clutches, are only empty social artifices and talking points that define opinions which cannot be understood by the other side, and may sometimes not be worth defending. And we find that the actual emphasis of our leader may very well be toward political power secured by fomenting hot-button issues tied to nationalism rather than those issues we profess to care about most as conservatives..
The scene that Hugo describes in France and Spain of 1823 with a reigning conservatism that does not have the support of the hearts of the people seems so appropriate today. For the parties are re-aligning, and people are changing a lot every day.