Holy Fools

I grew up in the 1970s and 80s. Iron Curtain. Cold War.  As a young child, I wasn’t really sure what all that meant, other than Russia (then Soviet Union) was the enemy and they had nuclear weapons. I watched “The Day After” and in my childhood brain, nuclear fallout and radiation poisoning grew as real possibilities.  The Berlin Wall fell my sophomore year of high school and the dissolution of the USSR was in its final stages as I graduated high school and began college.  Of course, by then, then Operation Desert Storm had begun and Saddam Hussein became the next enemy. 

And here I am, listening to the news of Vladamir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine.  A normal day becomes the unimaginable.  Bombs falling; parents having to pull their children out of bed to run for a bomb shelter and try to explain what is happening to their children who are terrified and asking “Why?” Last night, as I cuddled and talked with my son at bedtime, I thought of all those who were doing the same across the world, and yet how different their conversations have probably are in this moment.

I prayed.  I prayed for Ukraine, for those who were in fear that moment, for those who were losing everything, for safety, for the United Methodist Churches I had read about that were opening their doors as shelter, and for peace.

Then I came upon this poem by Ann Weems, composed for Ash Wednesday 2003:

I No Longer Pray For Peace

On the edge of war, one foot already in,

I no longer pray for peace:
I pray for miracles.
I pray that stone hearts will turn
to tenderheartedness,
and evil intentions will turn
to mercifulness,
and all the soldiers already deployed
will be snatched out of harm’s way,
and the whole world will be
astounded onto its knees.

I pray that all the “God talk”
will take bones,
and stand up and shed
its cloak of faithlessness,
and walk again in its powerful truth.

I pray that the whole world might
sit down together and share
its bread and its wine.

Some say there is no hope,
but then I’ve always applauded the holy fools
who never seem to give up on
the scandalousness of our faith:
that we are loved by God……
that we can truly love one another.

I no longer pray for peace:
I pray for miracles.

I remembered Rev. Yvonne’s sermon last Sunday about loving our enemies (Jesus’ words, not just hers) and I prayed for Vladamir Putin and all the others who were making decisions that hurt people.   I once again decided I still want to be a part of “the holy fools who never seem to give up on the scandalousness of our faith.”

And I prayed for miracles.

Will you join me?

One Comment Add yours

  1. Linda Brothers says:

    I join you in prayer, wise dear one.


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