Wednesday, April 17, 2013
Spying for Hope and Joining Jesus
One of my favorite bloggers wrote on the day of the Boston Marathon, that as she watched the news, "...I learned that I want to be a First Responder to every hurting person who crosses my path. God bless all those who run toward those in pain and fear."
- Glennon Melton
That is Incarnation, friends, a God who runs toward those in pain and fear.
At LNPC we've been talking a lot in this Easter season about noticing the Living Lord, seeing Jesus right here in our concrete, daily lives. And so as we held in prayer all those affected at the Boston Marathon, we also sought to notice and give thanks for all the ways people join Christ in being with and for one another in the midst of pain and fear.
As "spies for hope" and witnesses for wonder, we began collecting some words, images and article links on our church facebook page that help us to see God-with-us as we are with and for one another.
Here are some glimpses of grace we came across:
Stories of Kindness...Atlantic Wire
13 Examples of People Being Awesome...Business Insider
These Heroes Showed Compassion...Huffington Post
Love and Hope in the Wake of Boston...Rev. Dr. Eric Baretto
Status Update: By Anne Lamott (4/17/13)
"Frederick Buechner wrote, 'Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don't be afraid.'
But it is hard not to be afraid, isn't it? Some wisdom traditions say that you can't have love and fear at the same time, but I beg to differ. You can be a passionate believer in God, in Goodness, in Divine Mind, and the immortality of the soul, and still be afraid. I'm Exhibit A.
The temptation is to say, as cute little Christians sometimes do, Oh, it will all make sense someday. Great blessings will arise from the tragedy, seeds of new life sown. And I absolutely believe those things, but if it minimizes the terror, it's bullshit.
My understanding is that we have to admit the nightmare, and not pretend that it wasn't heinous and agonizing; not pretend it as something more esoteric. Certain spiritual traditions could say about Hiroshima, Oh, it's the whole world passing away.
Well, I don't know.
I wish I could do what spiritual teachers teach, and get my thoughts into alignment with purer thoughts, so I could see peace and perfection in Hiroshima, in Newton, in Boston. Next time around, I hope to be a cloistered Buddhist. This time, though, I'm just a regular screwed up sad worried faithful human being.
There is amazing love and grace in people's response to the killings. It's like white blood cells pouring in to surround and heal the infection. It just breaks your heart every time, in the good way, where Hope tiptoes in to peer around. For the time being, I am not going to pretend to be spiritually more evolved than I am. I'm keeping things very simple: right foot, left foot, right foot, breathe; telling my stories, and reading yours. I keep thinking about Barry Lopez's wonderful line, "Everyone is held together with stories. That is all that is holding us together; stories and compassion."
That rings one of the few bells I am hearing right now, and it is a beautiful crystalline sound. I'm so in."
How to Keep Our Babies Safes, by Glennon Melton