|Unsplash -Remi Walle|
God has told you, 0 mortal, what is good . ..
to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God.
Micah 6:8 (NRSV)
This passage from Micah is a favorite of mine because it reflects the dream in the heart of God for us. It is a dream that some times takes my breath away as I strive to live it. At the dawning of the twenty-first century, I believe God is calling us to live as if gender equality, partnership, care for the planet, and justice in church and world are a reality. We can learn from those around us and those who have gone before us who are committed to making the world one.
Great people of our time, such as Dorothy Day and Martin Luther King, are role models who inspire us on our journey. They show us how to dream great dreams and to live life passionately. Social activist Dorothy Day lived simply and confronted a consumer society's exploitation of the poor and the use of violence to solve conflicts. Her response to social sin was to live a life of humble service and to raise a voice in protest of injustice. She wrote: "If we are not being persecuted for our beliefs and life, there is something wrong with us."
Prophet Martin Luther King gave hope to those who experi enced discrimination because of the color of their skin. He led millions to the mountain of love, where he proclaimed his dreams for all people to live together in peace and justice. King said: "If a person hasn't found something they will die for, they aren't fit to live."
The Federation of Christian Ministries (FCM) is a network of individuals and communities that offer new ways for people to live God's dreams of love and justice in our time. FCM strives to witness the example of the inclusive Jesus and the early Christian community. This organization welcomes the marginilized and alienated who are looking for a spiritual family. It affirms the equality and partnership of women and men in ministry. It certifies qualified women and men to preach the gospels, preside at liturgies, witness weddings, conduct funerals, design rituals, and provide pastoral care. In so doing, it gives birth in the present to a contemporary model of ministry for twenty-first century spiritual pilgrims.
Did you ever ask yourself, "What am I willing to die for?" Is this an ideal, an impossible dream- or is it something that God is calling you to give your heart to now so that the world will be a more beautiful, peaceful and safe place?
Spend time today dreaming. Let your mind and heart journey anywhere God leads you, and listen as God speaks to you. Open yourself up to life with all its possibilities. What are you willing to die for? What are you willing to live for? What is God calling you to give your heart to now?
Recall any dreams you have had, and select one to dialogue with. What is God saying to you through the images, thoughts, feelings and sensations of your dream? Write down your insights. Give thanks for the many ways God communicates with you, especially through your dreams.
Listen as God says your name:
(Your name), I will speak through you, work through you, and love through you to make my world a more beautiful, safe, peaceful and just place. I will do great things through you. I will liberate, heal and transform unjust structures through your efforts. I will help you lead others into glorious freedom.
Quiet your mind and body by taking several deep breaths. Let go of any noise or distraction. Be still in the presence of God, and become aware of any obstacles or blockages that keep you from living your dreams. Bring to mind each of your concerns, and surrender them, one by one, to Holy Wisdom. See yourself radiant and gifted, as you are before God. Now view your life through the dreams of joy that God has for you. See yourself living these dreams.
Recall how you have experienced the courage of role models or mentors who have lived life passionately. Recall the names of these people, and offer thanks for each wise guide who showed you how to live your dreams. Select one to whom you will write a letter of appreciation. Write that letter today.
Compose a song, poem, dance, work of art or prayer as an expres sion of your dream to live life passionately. As you do so, be in touch with the energy of the Spirit moving within you and through you. Now open yourself to dream new dreams that will make the world a more beautiful place, dreams you are willing to die for.
Make this your prayer today:
0 God of Passionate justice, 0 Lover of Gentle Strength, awaken deep within me your dream of a healed and transformed cosmos, of a healed and transformed me. Take away any fear lurking in the corners of my soul. Inspire me with the courage I need to speak truth to power. Fill me with a new sense of your righteous anger toward the deadly energies of oppression and domination. Make me see that change is possible, that all I need is faith, that all things are possible if I trust you. Challenge me to live simply so that others may simply live. Give me a heart of tenderness to love others deeply. Yes, I can- I will- live your dream of life for me- a dream I am willing to die for.
(From A Promise of Presence by Bridget Mary Meehan and Regina Madonna Oliver)