For most of my life, GM has been a big part of our local economy and identity. When traveling outside of the U.S. I often explain that my home is in Grand Rapids, Michigan about 150 miles from Detroit.
So when General Motors, became the second-largest bankruptcy in history, it was a sad day for our community and state. For 77 years the company had been a global sales leader. It manufactures cars and trucks in 34 countries, employing 244,500 employees and selling and servicing cars in 140 countries.
In filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection the company that had been the worlds largest automaker reported 82.29 billion in assets and $172.81 billion in debt.
On Monday of this week, the headlines of the Wall Street Journal announced,”GM Collapses Into Government’s Arms.”
It’s not as if GM’s failure was a surprise. We’ve all seen this coming. Yet today at coffee tables and water coolers across the region people will be talking about the past and future of this once proud giant, whether bankruptcy was the best way to go, whether government control is unAmerican, and who’s to blame.
Seems to me that, in many ways, GM is a picture of our own lives. Her short sightedness is a picture of our own self-deception. Her collapse into government arms is a picture of us falling helplessly into the arms of our God.
Whether it will work for General Motors is yet to be seen. What many of us do know is that admitting our spiritual bankruptcy at the foot of an executioner’s cross, remains the best decision we ever made.