The Blessing of Discomfort

I found this great post from Michael Hyatt while clearing out my Instapaper inbox today.  He cites a benediction forwarded to him by his wife.

To describe it as counter-cultural is an understatement.  It’s revolutionary.

May God bless you with discomfort

At easy answers, half-truths, and superficial relationships,

So that you may live deep within your heart.

May God bless you with anger

At injustice, oppression and exploitation of people,

So that you may work for justice, freedom and peace.

May God bless you with tears

To shed for those who suffer pain, rejection, hunger, and war,

So that you may reach out your hand to comfort them

And turn their pain into joy.

And may God bless you with enough foolishness

To believe that you can make a difference in the world,

So that you can do what others claim cannot be done

To bring justice and kindness to all our children and the poor.

Amen

Can you imagine a world of Christians receiving this blessing…and then acting on it?  A continent?  A nation?  A congregation?  It would change the world.

remembering Martin Luther King, Jr.

Martin Luther King Jr., a great but fallible man, reflected in a sermon,

Every now and then I think about my own death, and I think about my own funeral. Every now and then I ask myself, ‘What is it that I want said?’ I’d like somebody to mention that day, that Martin Luther King Jr. tried to give his life serving others. I’d like for somebody to say that day, that Martin Luther King Jr. tried to love somebody. I want you to say that day, that I tried to be right on the war question. I want you to be able to say that day, that I did try to feed the hungry. And I want you to be able to say that day, that I did try, in my life, to clothe those who were naked. I want you to say, on that day, that I did try, in my life, to visit those who were in prison. I want you to say that I tried to love and serve humanity.

from commonprayer.net

slavery and St. Patrick’s day

In the revelry that goes along with St. Patrick’s day, we would do well to remember one critical fact about the patron saint of Ireland…St. Patrick was a child slave.

Those who remember today only as an excuse to dye rivers green, consume rivers of green beer, wear green, and engage in other mostly juvenile shenanigans would do well to remember the 27 million modern-day slaves in the world today.

  • St. Patrick was one of them.  
  • St. Patrick broke free.  
  • St. Patrick changed the course of Irish history (and by extension much of the west) forever. 

More than that, we should all take advantage of that sobering reality to learn more about the issues and take action to put an end to it.  For starters, go to Free the Slaves to learn just how how horrible and widespread slavery is today—spoiler: it is far more of a problem today than it ever was is 19th century America.  And it isn’t just an overseas problem.  Slavery exists right here in the USA today.

We have the power to set the captives free.

We have the power to end slavery in our generation.

Now that would be something I’d raise a pint of green beer to celebrate!