September 25, 2017

Social Action

Social Action
Sue Stolze

Serenity Prayer:
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change…
The courage to change the things I can…
And the wisdom to know the difference.

I’ve pondered Jesus’ message to “sell all you have and come follow me” from adolescence till my aging present. The injustice I see around me and that I read about every day is a constant irritant. Until it affects me or mine, though, It’s not quite a “hunger or thirst for justice”.

I’d like to offer three areas in which we can address the “acceptance/change” dynamic, and grow in our serenity and generosity.

First, “learn to see with new eyes.” Jesus asks us to look and to see. There are things we can do to help with making things better and fairer. Granted, they may be tiny—bringing sandwiches for Habitat days or giving nickels and dimes to buy mosquito nets for African children or sending an advocacy email to a person in power but we first need
to SEE the need. AND it starts at home and in our sanctuary. This year I have learned to see racism in our midst with new eyes.

Second, do your bit without needing to see vast or instant improvement. Planting the seed is as important as harvesting the wonderful fruit. It takes courage to let go of the outcome, especially in systemic injustice. l love Bread for the World for the chance it
gives us to use our “voice” to advocate for systemic changes to combat hunger.

Third, know the difference between “can” and “can’t.” I am not able to sell all I have. I just can’t be that counter-cultural. I CAN ask the Spirit for a more loving heart. I CAN work to look harder at long-term efforts and to plant my seed. I CAN, in increments, use my voice for justice. I CAN respond to the many opportunities here at Parkway (and elsewhere) to help in the communities we inhabit.

God help us all to see and do…And give us the wisdom to know the difference.