Ferguson, Immigration, LGBT Rights, And The Destructive Myth Of ‘Them’

Rid yourself of THEM, and blame.
Humbly seek revelation of US.

As always, thanks John

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Ferguson, Immigration, LGBT Rights, And The Destructive Myth Of ‘Them’


john pavlovitz


Thank God for Them.

Whenever we’re in a fight, we need a clear enemy, and we need it fast.

There’s something about human nature that craves separation in times of conflict.

It’s a deep-rooted self-preservation that drives us to divide.

We so often find ourselves in the overwhelming mess of human dysfunction, and it all hits the fan like it has again this week; but instead of trying to truly understand what’s really happening before responding, rather than wrestling with the complex and the nuanced and the elusive; we simply look for an easy villain to condemn and remove.

Enter, Them.

Side-stepping the bulky, cumbersome, time-consuming tasks of wading through layers of history and culture and experience, and of uncovering the hidden heart of the current struggle, we move immediately to building the walls, drawing out the boundaries, and finding the lines with which can mark off the Good and the Bad people.

We rush to identify the clearly visible characteristics of those who will define Us, and…

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I am stunned by this poem.
The beauty, the longing, it tears at my heart with the things that were, and no longer can be, the things that are and soon will be the things that were and can no longer can be…

and hidden there, in the borders between the words…the things that are Coming.

Please, Constance, read this slow and savor it…and then again. Melissa, I am so very grateful for this poem.
Much love and much respect!

Melissa Shaw-Smith

DSCF9559I step from one world into another
Like a bather setting my toe in the icy Atlantic on a June day.
It is a painful transition
And yet once the gut is sucked in with a sharp inhale of breath
My horizon shifts and it is palatable.

I step into the damp air of an Irish morning,
Tang of salt and mud off the Shannon estuary,
Strong whiff of cow manure. I know I’m home.

The navy suit and general greyness of the men at the passport desks is expected.
One takes my passport and in a the soft Galway accent—
you would be forgiven for thinking the fella had a marble rolling around in his mouth
says to me, Ah you must be David and Sally’s daughter. Tell your parents I was asking for them.

I am at once comfortable with the scale of things:
Four steps to the…

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This Blessed Longing

“The celebration of Advent is possible
only to those who are troubled in soul,
who know themselves to be poor and imperfect,
who look forward to something greater to come.

“For these, it is enough
to wait in humble fear
until the Holy One Himself
comes down to us, God
in the child in the manger.

“God comes.
The Lord Jesus comes.
Christmas comes.
Christians rejoice!

“When once again
Christmas comes and
we hear the familiar carols and
sing the Christmas hymns,
something happens to us…

“The hardest heart is softened.
We recall our own childhood.
We feel again how we then felt,
especially if we were
separated from a mother.

“A kind of homesickness
comes over us
for past times,
distant places,
and yes, a blessed longing
for a world without violence
or hardness of heart.

“But there is something more—
a longing for the safe lodging
of the everlasting Father.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, December 2, 1928