Saturday of the First Week in Lent
This morning, my freshly-made up, no-hair-out-of-place,
not-a-morning-person self left the house by 8:30 a.m.
So if you opened your email this morning ready for morning meditation, I’m sorry. I went missing.
This morning, I went downtown to a Screen Actors Guild/AFTRA meeting. Television performers and movie performers are voting this month to merge their two unions. The main reason is that as one union, performers would have better bargaining power with the monolithic entertainment entities with their streaming/movie/television/ internet/etc etc etc capabilities. Two old powerful unions are trying to work together to move into the future because the new powers in entertainment are playing one set of performers’ contracts against another union’s set to in a race to the bottom of the pay scale.
This afternoon, I watched a news story on MSNBC about a high-school Valedictorian who has applied to Yale with a 6.7 GPA (I didn’t even know 6.7 was possible!) but who is facing deportation to the country of her birth, Colombia. She entered the United States when she was three years old. And the United States has a Congress that cannot see fit to approve the Dream Act for young people brought here as children if they go to college. What kind of a travesty of justice is it in a country that prides itself on justice when young people who by all accounts are Americans, highly effective Americans, are deported because of backward thinking politics?
These two small stories, amid stories of towns torn apart by tornadoes and families torn apart by a young and troubled shooter in Ohio and a national political party troubled by women’s contraceptive issues, testify to our time of instability – chaos even.
The past and the future are banging up against each other with increasing fervor and the broken chunks of society are rising ragged in the rushing springtime river.
And in the gospel reading, Jesus says, “love your enemies, pray for your persecutors….”
I don’t doubt that reading these examples raised some kind of ire in you. On one side of the issue or the other. Not that the time of Jesus was any cakewalk with Roman crucifixes lining the roads into town and back.
Besides turning off the news and isolating ourselves from the world (is that even possible???) what can we do to hang onto our resolve to stay at peace, to avoid fault-finding or sarcasm or disdaining words or abrupt anger? What are we to do in this crazed time?
God’s “sun rises on the bad and the good,” Jesus says; “the rain falls on the just and the unjust…”
i.e. it’s not ours to judge but to observe, to witness.
Already, corporations have pulled advertising from the radio talk show; already a consensus grows, people from both political parties, conservative and liberal, that we aren’t turning women’s health back to the 1950s.
What miracles can grow if we are able to witness, to write the email or the letters or make the phone calls, rather than judge or yell?