December 14, 2020

Prayer: “Holy God, speak to all that keeps me from listening.
Speak to me an Advent message. I sit expectant to hear.
Word of God, speak. Amen.

Scripture Reading: Micah 5:2-5a
2 But you, O Bethlehem of Ephrathah,
who are one of the little clans of Judah,
from you shall come forth for me
one who is to rule in Israel,
whose origin is from of old,
from ancient days.
3 Therefore he shall give them up until the time
when she who is in labor has brought forth;
then the rest of his kindred shall return
to the people of Israel.
4 And he shall stand and feed his flock in the strength of the Lord,
in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God.
And they shall live secure, for now he shall be great
to the ends of the earth;
5 and he shall be the one of peace.

I received a text from a colleague and friend. He just wanted to remind me that he was holding me in prayer. I knew why and I appreciate his attentiveness. Today is political and dare I say partisan as well. I say this not because of the Electoral College vote but because it is the 8th year that has passed since the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Think about this. The children killed that day have been gone longer than they were alive. Armed with a semiautomatic rifle, two semiautomatic pistols and multiple rounds of ammunition, the attacker killed 20 first-graders, 6 and 7 year-olds and six school employees. I’m just going to sit and remember how horrific and disturbing it is – the “conspiracy theorists” can’t make the reality go away. I’ve come to the conclusion that I don’t want us to ever forget. I don’t want us to be quiet about decreasing violence in our community or country. If the world we live in is screwed up and if we continue to do nothing about it, the world will stay screwed up. Sometimes it is that simple. Something is a bit different for me this year. I realize (after an extended and very quiet visit to my chair) I’m no longer so sad but I am angrier because we continue to choose not to do anything about decreasing the violence. That is also a judgment against myself. This past Sunday we lit the Peace Candle and heard a message about courage. Annunciation, Disruption and Invitation. You have to wonder if our beginning prayer is being answered.

Reflection Questions:
Who are you holding in your prayers?
What one thing can you do to decrease the violence in our community?
What are you being invited to do this Advent Season?

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