You turned my weeping into dancing that my heart may sing your praises. . . .remind the people to be ready to do what is good, to be peaceable and considerate, and always gentle toward one another.
In reflecting on the readings, for some reason I thought of the violence in our world and the need for a different response to conflict, to one another. A friend of mine works for the Red Cross in Kenya and recently sent me an email about their campaign to prevent post-election violence in the upcoming elections. In 2008 there was horrendous post-election violence. The hope is to prevent a repeat by getting all Kenyans to sign the pledge against violence: Chagua Amani.
Our nation recently grieved over yet another school shooting. The outpouring of prayers and support from people everywhere was so great that the community in Newtown has asked people to stop sending gifts.
My husband and I recently experienced a sudden violent car accident. I noted that after the accident we were ever so tender and gentle with one another; grateful that there were no major injuries, no other cars involved, no granddaughter riding with us at the time. . . .
He saves us by the washing of rebirth, by the Holy Spirit. If we open ourselves to the work of the Holy Spirit, there can be alternatives to violence. We can become a people who are more compassionate toward one another and our weeping will turn to dancing, our hearts sing the Lord’s praises.
Open the door of the heart
Receive another’s pain
Dialogue the questions and answers
Find the shared hope and spirit within
Work together to build a new way
Sing praises and celebrate goodness