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Showing posts from 2014

Five Lost Souls

Three Hispanic teens are out late searching for someone to be the target of their pain. Two homeless Navajo men are sitting in an abandoned field strewn with rocks and glass, drinking away their pain, dulling whatever path that has led them to this place. Two broken roads meet last Saturday night, and we are left wondering if can ever call ourselves a civilized or caring community. For no other reason than rage and hate, the three teens spend the next hour bashing the men in the field with hands, feet, cinder blocks and poles. Through splattered blood and cries of pain, the teens shout " eat mud bitch. "

The next morning the homeless Navajo men are found under a mattress. The faces of these beautiful children of God are mutilated beyond recognition. They are caked in blood, brain matter and mud. Unrecognizable in death as they were invisible in life. No one seemed to know who they were, only that they were the nameless homeless. The three teens walk home with blood on their h…

The Sacred Now

An old acquaintance who tends to be a bit rigid came up to me and asked, we no, stated "When are you going to learn?  All you talk about is the poor.  They are killing themselves.   If we don't change the culture, the world will collapse.  Jesus is not coming back a happy man."  I smiled and asked how his knee replacement surgery had affected his running.  He looked at me surprised and quickly changed the subject.  I wondered what it was like to know the mind of Jesus and his particular mood upon arrival.  Interesting.

I wished him well, turned around and just then a raindrop landed on my forehead.  At that one instant, I found so much joy in the sacred present.  The mystery of water, the mystery of the now. The previous conversation was an ancient relic.  The potential argument or irritation began to collect dust.  
When the raindrop touched my forehead, nothing else mattered.  I stopped in mid-stride.  So natural.  I did not intentionally stop; my body became still as …

Our eyes meet

I was at a stoplight today. A homeless woman was holding a sign. 4 lanes of traffic, I could not give her money. 
She was maybe 45. She looked lost. Lost in her pain, lost in society, everyone ignored her. Dirty clothes, dirty sign. Please help. I bet she was a cute child whose eyes, at one time, held hope and smiled brightly. What happened that led her to this corner?  
No one looked at her. They looked ahead. It is easy not to make eye contact. She put her sign to windows. help.  I noticed a man squirming. I can imagine people silently urging, wishing the light will turn green. 
I watched her and our eyes met. Do I continue to make eye contact? How could I even ask this question? 
I tried to smile but I felt useless.  I could not give her money, she was too far away. A smile? I felt silly. They say money won't help, but I cannot ignore this child. Yet somehow I do. My red truck is a world away from her concrete corner. The light turned green and I moved forward.
All I could do was wi…

A Priest

4 June 1962

Navy Chaplain Luis Padillo was giving last rites to dying soldiers as sniper fire surrounded him.  A wounded soldier pulled himself up by clinging to the priest's cassock, as bullets chewed up the concrete around them  Hector Rondon Lovera, who had to lie flat to avoid getting shot, later said that he was unsure how he managed to take this picture.  Normal Rockwell eerily used this photograph as a template for his Southern justice painting:

 “Murder in Mississippi“.

After Bethlehem

Have you wondered what happened after the Wise Men left Bethlehem?  It was such a long, tiring journey to find the child.  Tired, happy, sore, relieved.

They walk in, with a knowing and their lives are changed.  If so, how?  After the akward greetings, the gifts, did they hold Jesus in their arms?  Did they give him a soft kiss?  Did they want to stay?

Back on the journey to life, somehow changed?  Will they forgive, will they give, did they change the world in small ways that we feel today.  Did they set someone free because they were now free.  did they seek him once again?  Maybe a new journey, certainly a new life.

Back home after holding Christ, somehow, I am different.