Here is your weekly dose of Friday Focus — a smattering of what I’m reading, practicing, listening to, watching, or pondering.
A reflection I’ve written – This past weekend was disturbing for me. To watch a nation in chaos, with so much pain, much of it, if I am honest, I really don’t understand. Over the last several years, I have watched systems and institutions that I naively trusted crumble in moral lapse, character defect and abysmal leadership and shepherding. I wrote the following – I need to be an instrument of peace.
What I’m Reading – Anti-Racism Resources If you read the reflection posted above this will make sense. It’s time to go on a “learning to understand journey”. A friend and colleague sent this to me as a response to my reflection, and I am using it as a map to explore and deepen the reality of race within myself and how I am affected as well as the changes that I need to make in my life and worldview.
What I’m watching – A country divided. A country that needs action and prayer – listening and genuine dialogue.
Powerful songs I’m watching and listening to – Mix – Hold On (Negro Spiritual) and Oh Freedom! – The Golden Gospel Singers. Cultural music helps me to understand the experience, joys and pain of others. After this week of powerful expressions of pain in our country, I needed to find these young men singing this trilogy of music, and I am so glad that I did. To hear the song Oh Freedom, and also to see it, is inspiring. I have not done a good job standing with those who hurt, those who are violated, those who are treated unfairly and inhumanely. I’ve kept a comfortable distance and that is not solidarity. I need to change. Please know that watching and sharing these two short songs is not me changing… that will need to be acted upon in the upcoming weeks, months and years.
Spiritual Practice of the Week – Pray and fast for someone who you know is struggling.
Sacred Scripture I’m pondering – “Woe to those who make unjust laws, to those who issue oppressive decrees, to deprive the poor of their rights and withhold justice from the oppressed of my people, making widows their prey and robbing the fatherless. – Isaiah 10:1-2 (NIV)
Be like Diane von Furstenberg and start your day by sending out one email specifically designed to help somebody else — without directly benefiting you at all — before you do anything else. Make introductions, send some encouragement, offer a helpful resource or link.
Quote I’m pondering – “Justice ceases to be just when it ceases to be human”. – St. Katharine Drexel
Peace and Blessings.
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