I thought I was going to write about “my week at Luther Seminary” in this post. I thought I would be waxing poetic and lyrical about a rich week of learning how to embody the lively Word, how to get in touch with a more gutsy (as in less cerebral) engagement with Scripture, Culture and context……..
But Orlando happened. The US awoke this morning to yet another mass-shooting, this one compounded by the racial and gender politics that have this country gripped in fear. Despite this fear, a community of Minnesotans chose to go ahead anyway with their first “Pride Fest”, and I couldn’t imagine being in a better place today. (See this link: https://www.mprnews.org/story/2016/06/12/twin-cities-orlando-reaction. ) I can’t pretend to know enough to speak to the details of this senseless, scandalous tragedy, but my guts know enough to write about what I do know:
I know that when God was creating, at the dawn of time, Ruach (the Spirit of God) hovered over the chaos and, with a Word, God fashioned beauty, wonder, love, light. And all that God created was and is beautiful in God’s delighted gaze. All. Every sweet child, every grey hair of an ageing head, everyone. ALL.
God’s Pride in the manifold diversity of humanity is unabashed, bold, more proud than any Mama or Papa could ever be of their child. God’s Pride includes my LGBTQ siblings. ALL. God’s Pride includes every colour of skin,every expression of life affirming, heart enriching, earth-mending spirituality, faith, religion. ALL. God’s Pride swells to see all who use their political power for the good of society, the good of the environment, the protection of the weak, the celebration of diversity, regardless of the name of a political party, the name on a ballot.
So, God’s Passion – God’s anguish, sadness, agony — is raw and all consuming tonight, for wanton acts of terror break God’s heart. Small-minded and small-hearted bigotry breaks God’s heart. Using tragedy to score political points breaks God’s heart. The ascendancy of a tribal culture of fear breaks God’s heart.
Knowing this, I pray. I pray my own anguish and despair to a God who knows more than we ever shall, the depth of sorrow of a broken world. I pray that my guts, and God’s passion will stir me and others to share in God’s Passion and Pride; to love what God loves, and to live loving as deeply as we can, for God’s sake.