Tuesday, November 25, 2014

A Prayer for Ferguson

It's impossible not to feel weary today, knowing that just a few states away there is such turmoil and anger. Violence, protestation and cries for justice have been heard across the country (and the world) coming from Ferguson, and we're all hovering in a state of confusion and pain.

I've done a poor job of following news coverage throughout this case and am making no attempt to argue the outcome or judicial process here. (Here is some information I plan to start with to be informed on what's happened/happening, an NPR roundup of the essential documents.) But wherever you fall politically at the end of the day, there lies a blinding and ongoing issue we have amongst ourselves and the overwhelming question of how to end the cycle of bigotry. 

I absolutely detest today's ruthless news media and our current political madhouse, so I relegate myself to a morning-commute's-worth of NPR for all the (relatively politically neutral) sadness I care to hear in a day. Blissful ignorance, for which I'm not necessarily proud, but it's a personal choice for my own sanity and peace.

News from Missouri, combined with a couple of painful, but important, recent writings from The Bitter Southerner (Gone With The Wind & My Southern Education) and Rolling Stone (A Rape On Campus) provide a whole lot to wrestle with in this life in the "new South." It's abundantly clear that we've got some really tough topics to work through in times like these, figuring out where we as individuals land in reversing very deep-seeded flaws in how we treat our fellow man.

While it's nice to go about our merry way, ignoring ugly truths, there comes a very real season where we need to face the music and make some damn changes. Those changes may just be to kick out nasty old thoughts that even slightly lessen the amount of love and grace we use in interacting with others. There's simply NO excuse not to show love to one another on a daily basis (entirely without regard to race, faith, orientation, etc.) if you're practicing the art of being a good human.

I'm pouring my heart out in prayer for peace, comfort to the afflicted and overwhelming love for Ferguson and beyond. I'm also meditating on how I'm most called (as a practicing Christian) to enact my part of the change in this incredibly dire situation. It's Thanksgiving and, as hard as it can seem right now to find gratefulness and peace in this time, I hope that love and family and friends and warmth are to be found, in this hardship more than ever.

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