by Katie Harmon-McLaughlin
We are tempted with believing despair is urgent-
We can get lost in overwhelm.
These lenses we wear we did not choose
As they attached themselves to our heart’s eyes
Through a million messages of fear-
A constant barrage in the soul.
We can all see the images
Hear the words
Sense the unrest
Like the whole earth is tipping toward ruin.
BREATHE. That’s first.
This is the time for taking off these fear lenses
Which blind us to Spirit movement and human goodness.
We can choose how we will see this world
And how we will respond to what we see.
As followers of the risen One,
What lens are we to wear?
The lens of a resurrection people is hope.
And what is resurrection today?
Is it an event, or many events?
Is it metaphor?
Is it basic biology- a regenerative truth trapped in our DNA-
A holy momentum we couldn’t stop if we tried
That says continuing is the natural way
That all life always, even in it’s dying, is becoming part of some other life?
And see the inherent goodness in the world
And find a grace not your own breathing through you
And ask in wonder- from where does this capacity for forgiveness come?
And what of this strength to keep going that lifts us up in our weariness and will not let us surrender to desolation?
Because it is a flame burning within you regardless just waiting for you to discover and live its heat, its light.
Because it is yearning to be noticed in the daily acts that beg for your attention- the simple kindness you receive throughout the day… and the impulse in you to give simple kindness to others.
Because the Spirit has not stopped stirring, moving, breathing, speaking…
Because nothing is ever really ending even when it feels like it is.
Because it is also the birthplace of courage to speak, to live, to act the God-dream for a better world within us.
Because it is not a flight from realities of despair but strength to enter them, to resist what they are telling us about what can’t be.
Maybe the whole earth is tipping toward shalom.
Maybe what we long for is just beyond the horizon.
Maybe seeds are taking root in us planted by our ancestors.
Maybe there is still much to flourish.
Maybe people are even better than we thought they were-
That for every oppressor there is a liberator
For every violence there are communities dedicated to healing
For every cry of war there is a movement of peace.
Maybe there are actually many more people who want to love and lift up then harm and beat down.
Maybe what seems impossible now will one day be the norm for our grandchildren’s grandchildren.
The lens of a resurrection people,
The good news of Jesus Christ for, in, through the world today.