Desmond Tutu writes that we are made for goodness and Love, friendliness and togetherness; we are made in a world created where there are no outsiders. We must build on this thought, especially these days, when it seems that everything around us loses value, even when there is longing in people’s hearts for a better world to come. If we accept what Tutu writes, it is vital that we reflect this goodness, this togetherness, allowing us to experience the beauty of our lives, our worlds.
This all starts within us, within our own homes, within our own neighborhoods. To get peace, we must open ourselves to love all the people in our homes and communities. We find it easier to give to a worthy cause found on TV when a child lives in poverty in Africa, or Southern Asia. Yet, when we turn around, we do not recognize the similarities in our own friends.
We are made for goodness; we are made for Love. We are made to be in a community, to raise the community to a higher level so that all members reap the harvest. It is only difficult if we do not try.
My wife and two friends looked at Sarah Miles feeding ministry in San Francisco and said that yea it is possible to replicate that in Fredericksburg. They tried; they struggled; they succeeded. Now St. George’s Episcopal Church is known as the produce church. Now, these same few people are inviting others in the community to expand their efforts to do the same. Love of neighbors, true Love, will defeat hardships all the time. But only if we try.
I am involved in the prayer ministry, and the healing prayer ministry at St. George’s. all my former friends, including former students, know me as one who can talk about any subject. I have the gift of gab. I have the gift of being able to talk about anything, talk legitimately.
I have turned this gift into a comfort for those in physical and mental depression, to lift them up. You all know that I have had many physical traumas in my life. I always wondered why I was able to bounce back to a productive life. I firmly believe that God was directing me to this present sacred role in my life. My years of teaching high school and college students allow me to be comfortable in areas that others shy from. I know standing in front of a classroom full of wise, intelligent students can be scary. I also know that praying in public is also a thought provoking and limiting practice that few are really comfortable doing. Trust me; neither of these two activities was easy for me.
If we step outside the box that we have enclosed our lives in, and if we can try to bring the Love that is within us out of our closets and share that with our neighbors, the whole world will improve. Just this morning, I was leaving an office building and the senior citizen ahead of me held the door for me, allowing me to stumble through it with the cane that an NPHS student carved for me. I told her that tradition says that I should be holding the door for her. Her comment: “Poppycock.”
We can break with tradition and take that little step that allows us to make it easier for the person next to us, regardless of what others may think.
And maybe, just maybe, our world will be a world of Loving our neighbors as ourselves, not distrusting them because of their appearance.
Personally, I Love you; all of you; especially the students who handed barbs right back to me, making my life just a little more interesting.
Have a great day!!