Words of Wisdom
The darker the world and the deeper the virus of hate
the more glowing must be our Christianity
and the more triumphant the note of our faith.
Rufus M. Jones
Everyone knows how to be resigned amid the joys and happiness of prosperity,
but to be so amid storms and tempests is peculiar to the children of God.
St. Francis of Sales
Jesus instructs the disciples to be bold in their acts of testimony and witness, trusting in God’s provision as they take up their crosses in following him. Jesus calls the disciples to a new way of living that declares how God is alive.
Philosopher George Yancy wonders if, in spite of a dominant strain of piety that sweeps across the nation, Americans are actually doing the opposite — worshiping a God who is not alive. In an op-ed essay for the New York Times, Yancy asks:
So, is your God dead? Have you buried God in the majestic, ornamental tombs of your churches, synagogues, and mosques? Perhaps prosperity theology, boisterous, formalistic, and mechanical prayer rituals, and skillful oratory have hastened the need for a eulogy.
Perhaps by remaining in your “holy” places, you have sacrificed looking in the face of your neighbor on the street. You know the one: the one who smells “bad” because she hasn’t bathed in days; the one who carries her home on her body; the one who begs. Surely you’ve seen that “unholy” face. I’ve seen you suddenly look away, making sure not to make eye contact with the “unclean.” Perhaps you’re preoccupied with texting, consumed by a work or family matter. Then again, perhaps its prayer time and you need to face east, or perhaps you’re too focused on Holy Communion as you make your way to church. Your refusal to stop, to linger, to look into her eyes, has already done its damage. Your body has already left a mark in its absence, in its fleeing the scene.
“You must remember, family is often born of blood, but it doesn’t depend on blood. Nor is it exclusive of friendship. Family members can be your best friends, you know. And best friends, whether or not they are related to you, can be your family.”
Trenton Lee Stewart
“Do you not know that God entrusted you with that money (all above what buys necessities for your families) to feed the hungry, to clothe the naked, to help the stranger, the widow, the fatherless; and, indeed, as far as it will go, to relieve the wants of all mankind? How can you, how dare you, defraud the Lord, by applying it to any other purpose?”
― John Wesley