Spring is here in all its glory. The long winter (and those endless snowdrifts) is finally drawing to a close. And Lent, too, nears its end.
I left my Lutheran roots years ago, yet I still cherish Lent with its contemplation, reflection and repentance. I value awareness. Awareness of weaknesses, shortcomings, guilt and sins.
Yet it is not only my own sin that I contemplate. The sins of humanity — the lack of basic decency, thoughtfulness, care and compassion — weighs upon us all. Its marks strike deep in my heart, from the mindless racism in Ferguson, to the senseless war in Syria, to the blatant pollution and destruction of nature and human lives in West Virginia.
Yet it also makes its mark on all of us. Whether or not we admit it, we all suffer for humanity’s sins.
Is it fair? Perhaps not. But that’s not important. We will always have sin and darkness. There will always be pain. There will always be burdens.
But what is important is how we strive to redeem humanity’s darkness with the light of our lives. What is important is how we strive to redeem our own inner darkness.
Will we succeed? It depends. Worldwide, the prognosis is poor. There is only so much we can do individually.
But together — ah. There is the key.
But you must let go of your fear. Let go of your desire for success, even on this front. Focusing on the ever-growing distance to the goal will only defeat you. Focus on what you can do, on what you know to be true and right and good.
And move forward. Strive to be the best human you can possibly be.
As I wander back out into the glorious spring sunlight, I leave you with the words of Kurt Elling from his single, Resolution. May they give you the inspiration and joy that they gave me.
Go forth. And be a light to others.
* * * * *
Go to war against the impotent side of living.
Use every power you’re given to stand and act like a man.
And pray every day to every god.
Strike the bowl of heaven, and the ringing will become a law.
Build bridges where you need to go.
Bring the fire of enlightenment here to life below.
Speak mercy to the things you meet.
Listen up to hear the whispering of the blood you bleed.
Stay awake — no mistake — dance the dream awake.