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Man in Black

There is something inspirational and uplifting and simple about the vision that the prophet Zechariah believes God has for his creation. It starts with each of us standing up for the things that we know are right and that we should believe in.

Today’s text invites us to begin to make the changes in our world, not by mass protest, but by beginning to live the changes out in our daily interchanges with each other. How different the world would be if we could do as the scripture says, have mercy and compassion for one another. And to also show an interest in the widows and orphans of our world. I never cease to admire the sheer tenacity of Grace and Paul Moses who live in Chennai. Seeing the need of children on the street and widows being neglected they started the Sangita Charitable Trust and today they care for 91 children and over 300 widows. Change happens when individuals stand up and are willing to be counted. When backing down is not an option God makes a way for paths to be opened up.

Recently I heard Johny Cash singing the song 'Man in Black'. I had heard it on a number of occasions but never really listened to the lyrics. I found it challenging because it reminded me of Bishop John Sentamu who refused to wear the insert in his clerical shirt until Robert Mugabe the harsh dictator was removed from power in Zimbabwe. Likewise Cash sings that he wears black until justice and compassion becomes the ideals that shape our world. Perhaps more of us should adapt similar actions when we have an issue that weighs heavy on our minds.

 

Lord,

Give me the courage 

To hold the line

To stand my ground

To refuse 

To back down

Or to give up

Or throw in the towel

Or turn my head away

Instead

Keep me focused

Hold my head firmly in place

Always facing in the right direction

My eyes fixed on Justice

My ears tuned to Goodness

My lips silent but truthful

Lord,

Search my heart 

Compel me to 

Believe 

Compassion outshines Retribution

Mercy trumps Revenge

Faithfulness defeats deceit

Keep my heart soft

My mind sharp 

And my hands empty

Ready to do your bidding

 

Remember: The Songs of Sanctuary gig tonight and tomorrow at the Vine Trust Barge, Edinburgh. To book free tickets go to the Eventbrite page.

Zechariah 7: 9-10

9 Thus says the Lord of hosts: Render true judgements, show kindness and mercy to one another; 10 do not oppress the widow, the orphan, the alien, or the poor; and do not devise evil in your hearts against one another.

 
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