Grace and Peace to you.
As new subscribers to the Blizzard of the Week Club we were hit hard enough by the last one that yesterday we held no services at the church building. (Four-foot snowdrifts at the front door, six feet at the back.) But we didn’t cancel worship; we held worship in our homes, united in the Spirit. I was the only one at the church, praying for all our members in their half-submerged houses. And as I did I became increasingly aware of all those who are unable to make it into the holy of holies, who for any reason are shut out. The logical extension of any exclusivity is an empty sanctuary. Heaven with nobody in it.
It’s so easy to stay snug in our little burrows, and to take for granted our inclusion. But we are not whole as a church—we are not whole as the human family— until we are in solidarity with all those who for any reason are excluded. So today I pray for all who are home bound, imprisoned, or homeless; for refugees, for all those who are displaced by war or disaster. I pray for those who are kept out because of who they are—their sexuality, their economic state, their physical condition or abilities, their age or their religion. I pray for those who believe they are just not good enough. I pray for those who are left out of our decision making, kept out of our circles, left out of our stories, all those who are not in the building. Jesus looked at the outcasts, the invisible, the misfits and the scattered, and saw a community. I pray for the coming of the Communion of all Creation.
Pray without ceasing, and put your hands to the shovels of justice. There are deep drifts to clear before everyone can come in, warm and welcome.
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