I’ve been trying to come up with a clever title for this post, but nothing comes to mind — probably because my mind is swirling with so many tidbits of life right now.
There’s a lack of justice in America. A boy has been killed, a month has gone by, and the killer — known at the time of the murder — is still free. Why has “information” previously unreleased now been “leaked” only after national attention is focused on the case? What I read in the news tonight makes it look like Trayvon was the aggressor and Mr. Zimmerman the innocent who shot and killed his aggressor. If this was truly the case, why is it only coming to light now? I am suspicious of the police department doing the “investigating.”
As I struggle with the living-out of my faith (particularly when politics of both church and state use religion as a divisive weapon), I find myself wanting to distill all the words — to get to the pure essence of what I believe. And right now, here’s where I stand, firmly rooted in the Hebrew scriptures of the book of Deuteronomy and the prophet Micah, demonstrated in action and words by Jesus:
“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” — Micah 6:8
“[Jesus replied] ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'” — Matthew 22:37-39
Justice. Mercy. Love.
Not hatred. Not vicious attacks on people who appear to be different from me. Not ignoring the pain and suffering of other people.
And then there’s Jen who has entered a courageously positive battle against cancer (here is her first post about it — she’s a very talented writer). If you are the praying sort of person, please add this family to your prayers.
It’s all connected by Skittles.
Yes, Skittles — those little candies with the colors of the rainbow. (Stay with me here.)
In one of her recent posts, Jen writes about how her daughter wanted to take 100 Skittles to school to celebrate the 100th day of school. (If you aren’t a parent of a young school child, just believe me: day 100 is a BIG deal. Everyone is supposed to bring in 100 of something.)
Trayvon was carrying a bag of Skittles when he was killed.
And the rainbow of colors… with the command to love our neighbors as ourselves… I learned that as a very young child in the form of a song:
Jesus loves the little children
All the children of the world
Red and yellow, black and white
They are precious in his sight
Jesus loves the little children of the world
When Jesus was asked the question, “Who is my neighbor?” he responded with the parable of The Good Samaritan. In essence, our neighbor is anyone we come in contact with — and in today’s world, that contact can easily be via the internet.
Jen is my neighbor.
Trayvon is my neighbor.
Mr. Zimmerman is my neighbor.
You are my neighbor.
I’ve now got my clever title for this post. Several hours have passed since I first sat down to write and it is now quite late. I’m going to publish and hope that my ramblings make sense to at least one of you!
With love from your neighbor,