For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.
~ Isaiah 55:8–9
Like many of you, I sat in heartbroken disbelief as the stories of the mass shootings at the Al Noor Mosque and the Linwood Islamic Center in Christchurch, New Zealand unfolded. People murdered in the midst of the sacred act of prayer and worship, targeted precisely because of their faith. I sat for a long time in our sanctuary Monday morning and prayed for each of the 50 victims and their families. I asked that God would bring peace to these families and to our world.
When Bridget and I moved to Detroit in 1997, we lived on the far west side just a couple of miles from Dearborn. Coming from where I grew up in Wisconsin we had never really met or interacted with Arab Americans and Muslims. We got involved in many interfaith activities and actions that helped us learn to know and appreciate our new neighbors. We met people of deep faith and people committed to helping shape a world of peace. I couldn’t help but think of some of these old friends in the days after the New Zealand shootings.
God’s ways are not our ways. Thank God for that…
When our ways are often bent on hatred….God calls us to a way of neighborly love.
When our ways are bent on the power of violence…God calls us to a way of generous service.
When our ways want revenge…God calls to the way of cheek turning and foot-washing.
We are on our way toward Easter—to discovering, once again, that God’s way brings dead things back to life.
Thanks be to God!
Glad to be on “the way” with you.
Grace and Peace,