Monday, October 27, 2008

Monday Meander 10-27-08 Let us realize the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice. - Martin Luther King Jr. I hope this is true, I pray this is true. I’m no longer sure that the arc is smooth, perhaps it’s more of an undulating wave. Perhaps the justice inherent in God’s character acts as a magnet… exerting its powerful draw, even when the detritus of life’s shattered shell’s are falling away. There is no justice we don't make daily like bread and love. - Marge Piercy, from her poem "The Ram's Horn Sounding." The little daily choices we make decide whether justice gains or recedes on any one day. Did I choose to laugh at a racist joke told by a friend rather than admit it was offensive? Did I choose to buy the cheapest brand I could, without consideration for the economy that produced it or the environment affected by its creation, use, and disposal? Did I choose to tell the sad child in the corner how utterly loveable he or she is? Did I choose the strange attraction of God’s character over the compelling consumer in me? This morning, in Africa, a small earth shattering moment occurred. Twenty four year old Hadijatou Mani won her day in court against her country, Niger. "It was very difficult to challenge my former master and to speak out when people see you as nothing more than a slave. But I knew that this was the only way to protect my child from suffering the same fate as myself," Mani said in comments published by Anti-Slavery International. (Reuters, 10-27-08 ) Perhaps Mani’s choice will curve the arc of justice for the other 43,000 slaves in Niger and for their children. The courage and tenacity of this young woman, the same age as my children, awes me. Her master claimed that when he freed her, she became one of his wives, and when she married she was jailed for bigamy. Our choices are made in a web of invisible power structures that emerge like a secret message when warmed by the fire of pain. Today I will choose to thank God for Mani and ask that her family be blessed as I gaze out over my laptop at the sun striking the blaze of tree gold across Torsey. May her life light all of our moral horizons. In a week I will choose to vote and pray that my choices bend the arc a little further toward the character of God, not by wishing for heros as I make the checkmarks, but by committing myself to be partners with those we choose to lead us into a future of attentive justice. Keeping in Touch: Please pray for *families already struggling with the onset of cold weather. *caregivers of aging loved ones. *those experiencing raw grief. *ongoing school and health care system restructuring. *Ricky Gibson and his family. Don’t forget to invite the wee ones of your neighborhood to the Church this Friday from 4-6 as we host the community Halloween party. Join in the fun and bring along a donation for UNICEF. (Have you put a UNICEF box on your desk or dashboard???) You Have Our Attention, Lord A prayer by Max Lucado - October 2008 Our friends lost their house The co-worker lost her job The couple next door lost their retirement It seems that everyone is losing their footing This scares us. This bailout with billions. These rumblings of depression. These headlines: ominous, thunderous - “Going Broke!” “Going Down!” “Going Under!” “What's Next?” What is next? We’re listening. And we’re admitting: You were right. You told us this would happen. You shot straight about loving stuff and worshipping money. Greed will break your heart, You warned. Money will love you and leave you. Don’t put your hope in riches that are so uncertain. You were right. Money is a fickle lover and we just got dumped. We were wrong to spend what we didn’t have. Wrong to neglect prayer and ignore the poor. Wrong to think we ever earned a dime. We didn’t. You gave it. And now, tell us Father, are You taking it? We’re listening. And we’re praying. Could you make something good out of this mess? Of course You can. You always have. You led slaves out of slavery, Built temples out of ruins, Turned stormy waves into a glassy pond and water into sweet wine. This disorder awaits your order. So do we. Through Christ, Amen In the Joy of Serving Christ with you, Pastor Karen

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