08 January 2011

Hate Hurts and Kills

This is my reply to Diana Butler Bass' blog  Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords: Speaking for the Soul in which she calls pulpiteers this Sunday morning, on the occasion of the Baptism of Our Lord, to resist being silent on the persuasiveness of evil political rhetoric prevalent in American culture. 

  • Diana, you are so on point with this clarion call to comfort and clarification. Even if there is none to be found in this moment of great angst and shame. Tomorrow's sermon will not be business as usual. While sitting here refining the sermon "Oh, Grow Up!" on 2 Peter 1:5-8, flowery, inspirational illustrations have given way to this painfully poignant reality where soul-tending demands acknowledgment. And so I will. Even at the risk of not being invited back to preach again to this Presbyterian Church (USA) congregation that is, at cursory glance and soul stance, the antithesis of Giffords' advocacy for the oppressed and advocate for justice. In the meantime, I weep and pray; and am taking others along with me.
Most disturbing to my human sensibilities is this graphic from Sarah Palin's site until it was removed after today's shootings. (Note to Sarah: It's not going to go away.). But now, honestly, if a Muslim person was in possession of such a blatant graphic of targets in crosshairs they would be investigated, interrogated and detained as a TERRORIST. But nooooo, a 'pretty' white woman with pithy proclamations is called the possible future president of america. Psst AMERICA, home grown terrorists are the real enemy to peace, family and the American way.

My prayer even now is this, Speak Holy Spirit, your servant hears.

01 January 2011


Happy New Year's 2011
Happy Kwanzaa Day 7 (Nia/Faith)
Happy Emancipation Day 1 (1863)

Though one not particularly given to the science and scholarship of numerology, my being the artist that I am finds 1.1.11 or eleven-eleven fascinatingly beautiful.  The balance, the synergy, the simplicity of the written number itself teases out Zen-esque calm or even OCD repetitiveness. Both, ever so comforting and somehow reassuring simply being one, beginning with one, standing with one, or standing alone there is innate balance, cosmic synergy and singular simplicity. And so, as I cooked traditional African Southern diasporic dinner 1.1.11 danced in my imagination to the rhythm of chopping, stirring, tossing, turning, folding, pouring, dipping and seasoning.

Happy New Year's 2011
The phone rang incessantly, in my home and in others' who received my call, exchanging greetings of good will and God's blessings for the new year. Hope. That is what new babies and new years bring to mind. Hope that this year will be better for those who need it, comparable for those who had a great prior year, and at least, not overwhelmingly catastrophic for any one near, kin, or friend. When I herald this cultural cliche I sincerely meant it to be my prayer for each of them; my prayer for myself; and my prayer for the world.

Happy Kwanzaa Day 7
I love, love, love Kwanzaa. This week of relaxing into celebrating the life and legacy of Africans, African Americans, and humanity is a marvelous bridge between the hectic preparation for the Holy-Days, wallet exhaustion from the holidays, and new year resolutions with a short shelf life.  This week I lead Kwanzaa worship on Day 2 with my partner at a multicultural church, attended Day 4 worship and called out the name of very creative entrepreneurial souls, and celebrated the final two principles of the Nguzo Saba last night over a community meal, gift exchange, queers and allies, teenage boy and lively toddler girls. And so it is, my Kwanzaa blessing is this:  May you know community as I have experienced it this week; and purpose to lend the experience all year long.

Happy Emancipation Day (1863)
As a native Texan, my mind wandered over to Juneteenth while celebrating Emancipation at WatchNight service last night. President Lincoln, whatever his motive, kept his word then; Texans got the word six and a half months later; Africans in American are still awaiting their 40 acres and mule. Still, I am giving God thanks and praise that I was to be born in a time such as this.  I am grateful for the Ancestors who died that I might live.  For the Ancestors who bled that I might bleed less. For the Ancestors who were rebellious that I might be bodacious.


Whew! I had a full day of reflection. I only pray you take the time to consider where you have been to know just where you might go. The possibilities of the next 364 days are endless and inviting. See you there! See you here, this time next year.

For I know the plans I have for you," says the LORD. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. // Jeremiah 29:11 NLT07