Posts Tagged With: mercy

In Honor of Black History Month – A Poem and a Lament of White Privilege

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I have decided to take the risk of offending you

  To gently ask that you join me too

  To wake up and make a move

  Towards what we know is true

I have decided to open my eyes wide

  To notice the turning of the tide

  To pay attention to those in pain

  And stand with them side by side

I have decided to open my ears

  To no longer be controlled by my fears

  To grow and to learn something new

  Though I am late and full of years

 

I have decided to take the risk of offending you

  To gently ask that you join me too

  To wake up and make a move

  Towards what we know is true

There is work to do and it’s not too late

  We are needed to advocate

  (Though we are white and somewhat fragile)

  To move a mountain of ignorance and hate

Our first work is to lament

  Centuries of damage, discord and blood spent

  There is far too much history

  To rush in like a savior sent

 

Oh God have mercy on us and hear our prayers

 

We have enjoyed our privilege and not listened to the cries of the oppressed

Instead we listened to voices minimizing or denying this oppression

 

We have turned our backs on their suffering, segregating ourselves

In neighborhoods and schools

 

For this we ask forgiveness

 

We have not full acknowledged our history

Of white supremacy, injustice, violence, genocide and slavery

 

We have hid behind our shame and fear instead

 

We have not listened to voices of our brothers and sisters of color

Asking us to take another look at our history.

 

For this we ask forgiveness

 

Help us to grieve and to mourn the past and the present racial injustice

Help us to open our ears, our eyes, and especially our hearts

Soften our hearts where they have grown indifferent and cold

 

O God have mercy on us and forgive us

 

Help us turn from the injustice

That is still systemic in our nation

Help us to understand what needs to be done

To undo and untangle racial injustice from our systems of

Justice, Education, Housing, Medicine, and Employment

 

For this we ask for your help and strength

O God have mercy on us and hear our prayers

Amen

 

   

  

 

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Categories: Black History Month, God, lament, Lent, Peace and Reconciliation, Poetry, Prayer, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Two Small Coins

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(This is another lament – #2.  These are not meant to shame anyone, but to help me and anyone else who is struggling with how to pray and how to respond to the challenges we face in the world we live in.)

We watched from our screens

The worlds unfolding tragedies

Lord have mercy

Cities crumbling and unlivable,

Ruined,

Lord have mercy

 

We saw men, women, children, the elderly

Fleeing with little or nothing

On foot, in trucks

Later in unstable overcrowded boats

Looking for help, looking for hope

Lord have mercy

 

Some came to meet them

To feed them and clothe them

To help them

Thanks be to God

Some opened their wallets and gave

What they could

Thanks be to God

 

Others of us felt hopeless

What could we do?

We looked at our two small coins*

And put them back in our pocket

Lord have mercy and forgive us

 

Every day more tragedies unfold

On our flashing screens

Lord have mercy

Every day

Lonely people walk across our paths

Some hungry and homeless

Others in need of a friend

Lord have mercy and forgive us

 

Forgive us God for when we do nothing

Oh Lord let our hearts be open

Show us what we can do

Let not fear keep us from love

Show us how we can love

Let love grow in our hearts

To overcome fear

Show us what we can do

Let us take the two small coins*

Out again and find a way

To use what we have

To help our neighbors in need

Thanks be to God

 

*Luke 21:1-4

 

Categories: Advent, borderlands, Faith, God, Hope, Hospitality, lament, Love, Prayer, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Where is Ruth?

Where is Ruth?

It is hard to say

Love has grown cold

Now she is hiding away

 

Violence in the streets

The children cry

The strong take little notice

While the helpless die

 

Mercy is her sister

She has all but disappeared

without the both of them

It is Ruthless, as we feared

 

© 2014 Julie Clark

(Ruth means compassion.  As I reflect on the shocking violence in Gaza I wonder how the world allows compassion to be so overrun by ruthless leaders. How easily we forget that violence brings more violence.  If we live by the sword, we will die by the sword. The end never justifies the means.  They are one. May God have mercy on us all!)

Categories: Gaza, God, Life, Love, Peace and Reconciliation, Poetry | Tags: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Lenten Post #6

Have I loved well today?

The unexpected guest who shows up

When my house is a mess?

The beloved spouse or irritating boss

Who gives me a list of extra things to do

When I am already overwhelmed?

The child who just does not

Seem to understand the meaning

Of the word “No”?

What about the media inflated or created

Unseen enemies?

Have I loved them well?

Prayed for God’s mercy and love to shower them?

Have I loved well today?

Those who don’t get me

Misunderstand me

Judge me

Think I am wasting my time?

What about those who snub me

Forget me

Don’t find me important enough

For their time of day?

It’s really all that He has asked me to do.

His one last dying request

Some days are better than others.

I have to confess

I have not loved well today

Lord have mercy

He does

He always does.

 

© 2013 Julie Clark

 

Categories: Faith, God, Lent, Life, Love, Poetry, Prayer | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

The world is on fire again

The world is on fire again

(Mercy for those near the flames)

The earth erupts and heaves its crust

(Mercy for those near the faults)

The oppressed revolt

Powers struggle

Who will be on top?

Who will be on the bottom?

Who will gain?

Who will lose?

(Mercy for those caught in the struggle)

The surface of the earth changes

Mountains fall into the sea

The seas rise with the melting ice caps

(Mercy for us all)

History moves on

One thing remains

Mercy is constant

© 2011 Julie Clark

Categories: Poetry | Tags: , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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