Wednesday, February 15, 2012

A Lenten Meditation

Christine Sine has  called for Lenten meditations on the theme, "What do we hunger or thirst for?"  Here is my reflection:

O God, I am parched.

I am barely able to move, my need is so deep. Yes, I move in the world, I eat, I drink, I converse.  But my body is hollow; my soul is mourning its loss.  My God, why have you forsaken us? I already know there is no hope on earth for us.

Why are the needy forsaken?  Why do children pick through garbage for food?  Why do the simple have no one to support them?  Babies hanging on empty breasts; wraith souls brutally violated; men wandering: hearthless, hopeless, frenzied, friendless.  They cry to you, and pour their hearts to you and they are silenced by death, even while living.  Why are the weak only granted more weakness?  Why are the mourning gifted ever more sorrow?

And the powerful obtain more power.  “Look at my sorrow, observe my need,” say those who horde the resources of this world as a toddler who insists that the whole of the world is his own plaything.  They offer a drop of water to the desperate and keep an ocean to themselves, never declaring “enough.”  Why do the sightless insist that compassion is fruitless?  Why do the powerful harden their hearts to the helpless?  

My God, how do you remain silent?  How does heaven remain barred, allowing the foolishly satisfied to claim that all is right in the world?  I am starving from your silence.  The god-speakers (but not do-gooders) insist that there is peace, peace, yet they do not step outside of their golden palaces long enough to see the sickness, poverty and death.  How long will you allow them to speak of your kingdom already come when destruction, despair and disdain reign?  How long will you allow them to speak of the miracle of democracy and capitalism, when billions of souls are the cost upon which the society is built? How dare you remain silent! Damn their blasphemies! Entwine their pseudo-god-speak with a millstone and cast them into the deepest lake of fire!

How dare you?  How dare you allow these dealers of synthetic theology speak while you remain silent?  How dare you allow generation after generation fall while the fat and sassy build themselves up, using your name so casually, so faithlessly?  Have you no pride? 

But I… my feet come close to stumbling. How easy it is to see a world entombed, and to fail to see the coming consummation.  Yours is the power.  Yours is the glory.  Yours is the kingdom.  If only I could enter into your patience.  It is so hard to welcome long suffering when children shiver in the cold and are beaten into becoming the next generation of evil-doers.  It is difficult to wait. 

I know, Lord.  I know you have given me everything good.  I know that your heart is with the needy.  You understand that when your sorrows overwhelm you it is hard to be grateful. You have experienced all of our temptations. I am not thankless, my Father.  But we are in need of restoration and resurrection.  No economic system, no governmental ideal will grant it to us.  Only your love. 

We are so parched, my Lord.  Satisfy us with your love.  Let mercy flood this world, until we drown in it.  Allow your compassion to cover our heads, until we cease struggling in its watery depths.  Let us finally rest.