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Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of January 8, 2006

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  • Adam DeBaugh
    Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of January 8, 2006 ********** As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho Press, here is a selection from our book of daily
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 8, 2006
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      Chi Rho Reflection for the Week of January 8, 2006

      **********

      As one of the on-going ministries of Chi Rho
      Press, here is a selection from our book of daily
      devotions, "Living as the Beloved: One Day at a
      Time," by the Rev. Dr. Sandra Bochonok.

      Please read the Scripture passage and Dr. Bochonok's
      meditation. We hope you will be blessed.

      Thank you for forwarding this to your friends.

      Contemplative activists

      "God has told you, O mortal, what is good; an what
      does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and
      to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?"
      Micah 6:8

      Sometimes I am surprised when people ask my opinion.
      I am even more surprised when people act on it. Such
      was the case one sunny afternoon when two Christian
      lesbians questioned me for about six hours about
      potential workshops to be offered at an international
      justice conference for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and
      transgendered people.

      A number of workshops were being suggested on economic
      and political justice issues, but there was a notable
      lack of spirituality topics. I asked, why? Their
      answer should grieve the ecumenical Church at large.
      It seemed that these particular people were hesitant
      to offer spirituality resources to such a "Bible
      bashed" community. The committee had considered
      a welcoming and affirming Bible and homosexuality
      workshop at one point but then backed off. The
      conference was to focus on social justice issues
      instead. Social justice issues were considered
      safer than spiritual issues.

      Yet it seemed to me an important trilogy is found
      in the Micah 6:8 verse. Justice without mercy is
      harsh. Mercy untempered with justice can actually
      encourage lawless and violent behavior. Working for
      justice and mercy without a personal spiritual life
      is difficult if not impossible. We are called to a
      humble walk with a higher power.

      It seemed unethical to me to train and motivate
      activists of any kind, without offering spiritual
      resources to empower them. Some will be jailed
      for their beliefs. Others will experience the
      consequences of living in a world that often
      rejects and ridicules the justice seeker. Many
      people in the world are eager to repress the basic
      human rights of sexual minorities. Potential
      martyrs and change agents need spiritual
      empowerment.

      "So," I said thoughtfully, "this justice conference
      is based on the nonviolent teachings of Gandhi, the
      late Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Jesus Christ
      in the Gospels. These three world leaders are what
      I would call contemplative activists. Each leader
      had spiritual practices, which sustained them as
      they lived and died in their prophetic roles. A
      workshop on spiritual empowerment needs to be
      offered to conference attendees."

      "Fine," came the instant response. "Will you do
      it?"

      "Yes," was my reply.

      When that particular conference was finished, the
      spiritual empowerment workshop had been one of the
      most popularly attended events. People hungered
      for spiritual resources as they worked for justice
      and full inclusion into society and their various
      religious institutions.

      Higher Power, bless us with spiritual empowerment.
      Amen.

      Grace and peace,

      Chi Rho Press

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