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“He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you whatever you did not do
for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’”
I had one of those experiences, last Thursday, which operates like a mirror held in my face, forcing me to look at myself and ask some hard questions. Don’t you just love those? I spent the day at the Legislative Workshop sponsored by the NC Council of Churches. From the Council’s website:
The North Carolina Council of Churches is a statewide ecumenical organization promoting Christian unity and working towards a more just society. The Council enables denominations, congregations, and people of faith to individually and collectively impact our state on issues such as economic justice and development, human well-being, equality, compassion and peace, following the example and mission of Jesus Christ.
I am so in love with this group! They are not just talking the talk; they are walking the walk! I heard speakers, and met people, who are “out in the trenches” working on various projects from legislative lobbying to sitting with grieving families of victims of gun violence in Durham – in their homes, in court, wherever they need support. They are living out their consciousness of who Jesus is and what he was about during his time on Earth. They are living out their understanding that the universal church’s primary raison d’etre is to continue the work necessary to fulfill his mission to “proclaim good news to the poor, freedom for the prisoners, recovery of sight for the blind, [and] set the oppressed free.” These folks put to shame those Christians who feel they have done their duty and have done God a favor, in the process, by showing up at church on Sundays.
“I remember a place where You spoke my name and I heeded to Your call ...”
from The Old Landmark, composer unknown
One of the best things about being back in North Carolina is the opportunity it gives me to re-connect with old friends and with family. I have had wonderful lunches and dinners with friends I had not seen in years; as well as some good, old-fashioned quality time with my sons and my grandson.
It got me thinking about those times in life that we call “full-circle” experiences. By that I mean the experiences that bring us back to some point where we have previously been. When I moved back here last month, I rented an apartment in the same complex in which I lived in the early to mid-90’s. There has been extensive new construction in this area since then - lots of newer, more modern housing choices. But I felt strongly drawn back to where I lived before, with my sons; just the three of us. And I still feel a fresh sense of peace and comfort each time I drive into the complex and enter my new home; which is smaller than the apartment we lived in back then, but with a very similar layout and “feel.”
Today, a song I haven’t thought about in years has been “stuck on re-play” in my head: