The Foul Taste of Sand

I felt kinda dirty.     On my way to work the other day, I passed a homeless man holding a sign asking for help.   In a rush, I turned a blind eye.   Not my problem, I have things to do…   After the day passed, having time and space to think and dwell on this, I realized that I had simply buried my head in the sand by choosing to ignore my homeless brother’s painful situation.  I felt kinda dirty.

As I wrestle with this, I realize that I have grown both accustomed to and proficient at ignoring the struggle of a world that God so loves.   My head is often buried.  However, I am convinced that this personal struggle is not just my own.   Other individuals and other institutions must also deal with this shortcoming and the guilt that comes along with it.   Is it possible that our church and our congregations have a similar struggle?

Are we being a voice of courage, hope, and support for the homeless?   Victims of sexual abuse?   The addicted?   The poor?    The rejected?   The unemployed?   The mentally ill?   Are we being the hands of Christ to those that need it most or are our collective heads buried in sand?

As I continue to wrestle with this, I am led to the early chapters of Isaiah, where an angry God challenges the way that his people choose to worship him while at the same time ignoring the needs that surround them.

Later on in Isaiah (58:6-12), God challenges his people to be “Repairer of Broken Walls”.    What does that mean, both at an individual and congregational level?    What does it mean to be a repairer of broken walls to a young woman that was just raped?   What does it mean to be a repairer of broken walls to a young gay man that has been rejected by every church he has entered into?  What does it mean to be the repairer of broken walls to a divorced couple struggling to find peace and help their children find stability?

I am not sure.  But for me, it starts by removing our heads from the sand and no longer living with the dirty feeling that it brings.

If God so loved the world, then our calling is to understand, invest, and engage the most broken children within it.

God Bless, Brian.

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