~A meditation in-between-the-lines, on the wonderful Benedictine blessing~
May God bless us with discomfort at easy answers, half-truths, and superficial relationships, so that we may live deep within our hearts.
I always thought God was the God of comfort. That any discomfort was from some place dark, not to be addressed, blaming it on a crack somewhere in my faith capsule. But now I know that God often pushes us to be uneasy with the easy, uncomfortable with the things that are less than what they could be, learning to be thankful in discomforts. Today. Tomorrow. Always.
May God bless us with anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that we may work for justice, freedom and peace.
Holy anger is a different kind of anger from the run-of-the-mill human, sin-filled anger. Holy anger targets the right wrongs, the right place for it to lay down its whoop. It is more than discomfort, more than the tirades of angry people. It is subtle, a slow burn that moves us closer to awareness, closer to thankfulness and gratitude. A holy anger brings us to a peaceful satisfaction that the anger of the angry never gets near.
May God bless us with tears to shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation and war, so that we may reach out our hands to comfort them and turn their pain into joy.
In the slums of Africa live the poorest of the poor. Most of us wealthy Americans (and even the poorest here are rich by the slum-dwellers’ standards) will never understand that kind of poverty, let alone live in it. But a wise Kenyan pastor once said, ‘you take one life at a time and give right there, to that one, until it stops hurting; then you move on to the next one. And one by one, we do what God has given us to do.’ Let us all learn to shed tears for those who need help, and then let it move us to action to help one by one.
And may God bless us with enough foolishness to believe that we can make a difference in this world, so that we can do what others claim cannot be done.
Ah, to be so foolish and innocent and unaware of boundaries. To be so brave and reckless that we think we can achieve anything that God wants done. In this world, it’s considered smart to believe in limits; it’s considered foolish to believe that God removes them, right? But here’s the real foolishness: it’s exactly how God runs the world. No-limit foolishness. Wild-eyed, unlimited, untethered. Ridiculous, boundless belief in the impossible. Do we believe that, or do we limit too much, too often. Let’s be fools for something bigger.