Mel's Healing Pilgrimage 2016

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Monday, March 30, 2015

Lenten Reflection: Waiting For Godot... and Gary, Indiana.

Me waiting for Godot?
San Diego Coronado Beach. Feb 14, 2015

Monday's Holy Week readings included the following lines from Isaiah 42:3-4

A bruised reed He will not break And a dimly burning wick He will not extinguish; He will faithfully bring forth justice. He will not be disheartened or crushed Until He has established justice in the earth; And the coastlands will wait expectantly for His law.

The recent RFRA (so called Religious Freedom Restoration Act) law in Indiana, like other laws coming soon in Arkansas and Georgia, take advantage of last year's Hobby Lobby Supreme Court ruling and goes far beyond older RFRAs. Rather than preventing governments from putting burdens on people, these new laws are intended to prevent people from burdening people. And, to rub salt into the wound, Indiana reminds us in SB101 that corporations and businesses are people and can therefore have a faith.

This breaks my heart because it feels like such a step backward. It's one thing to willfully ignore the discrimination that we can see happening in Ferguson, Missouri and other places. It's another to enshrine such discrimination into law and actually claim that those discriminating are the real victims. Masquerading discrimination as religion, like a klansman hides behind his hood, does not make the bruises go away.

I read this morning's readings and found strength. As we together walk towards Easter this week, we must keep our wick alive and remember that justice will be served. In the meantime, I pray for those in states like Indiana so that those who feel put upon, whether by faith or by birth, will have their loads lifted and their cups be filled by justice.

I recall watching a Samuel Beckett play "Waiting for Godot" in Stanford and thinking, "I'm still waiting and waiting and waiting." Decades later, I sometimes wonder how long I have to wait (yes, that play still challenges me). And I'm thankful that I have others with whom I can share my wait, for in community, we can draw strength.

But it's still Monday. And the coastlands will wait expectantly for his law.

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