I Am Tired of Crying

For the last two months I have been in tears or close to tears. Every time I hear of someone dying unnecessarily from the Covid virus because they are poor, an immigrant, or an indigenous person, I cry. Every time I hear someone has to go to work without the proper health care or safety precautions because they need to survive, I cry. Every time I hear of a black man, woman, or child being harassed by a police officer who should not be on the streets, I cry. Every time I hear of a black man, or woman being killed by police officers who have no place carrying a badge, I cry. Every time I hear a person of color cry out “I can’t breathe,” I cry. Every time I hear of a political leader speak callous, cruel words because they want to exert their power, I cry. Every time our state or federal legislators refuse to acknowledge the humanity of every person in this country, Black, brown, yellow, white, womxn, man, LGBQT, or differently abled because they are poor or just different, I cry. Every time I hear white men with guns verbally and physically abusing those who disagree with them, I cry. 

I am tired of crying.

All I want are the children of this country to grow up without tears, without pain, and without suffering. I want each child to know that those in authority care for them no matter their skin color, religious affiliation, or who they are. I want every child to know they are loved, cared for, because without the children we have no future, no life, no anything.

All I want are the people to recognize how racism, hate, white privilege and white supremacy are destroying our country. All I want is each person to be seen for who they are rather than what someone labels them. I want an end to the injustice meted out to people only because they are different from those who wrongly call themselves the elite. I want people to see each other as members of the same species, Homo sapiens sapiens, not different, all the same. I want the insanity of hate and greed of those in power to end. Is that too much to ask for?

I am tired of crying.

I am a white womxn, an old white womxn and am no longer able to go into the streets and carry banners, but I can scream, really loud.  I am screaming right now, through my tears. 

STOP HURTING EACH OTHER!
STOP KILLING EACH OTHER!
STOP TREATING EACH OTHER AS LESS THAN YOU!

START CARING FOR EACH OTHER!

START HOLDING EACH OTHER!

START FINDING HOW EACH OF YOU ARE ALIKE!

START LOVING EACH OTHERS’ DIFFERENCES!

BLACK LIVES MATTER!

WOMXNS’ LIVES MATTER!

HISPANIC LIVES MATTER!

ASIAN LIVES MATTER!

INDIGINEOUS LIVES MATTER!

LGBQT LIVES MATTER!

THE DIFFERENTLY ABLED LIVES MATTER!

YOU MATTER!

Ruth Jewell, ©June 1, 2020

Psalms of Lament and Hope – Prayerful Tuesday

Paris, Beirut, Syria, Iraq, The World God in your mercy, hear our prayers
Paris, Beirut, Syria, Iraq, The World
God in your mercy,
hear our prayers

The only gift I have to offer this week is my sorrow for Paris, Beirut, Syria, Iraq, and all of us.  So I offer the Psalms I go to when I am in the midst of sorrow and pain.  May your hearts be comforted by the words of the psalmist and may you find solace knowing others cry with you.

Psalm 36:1-4 (MSG)
A David Psalm
1-4 The God-rebel tunes in to sedition—
all ears, eager to sin.
He has no regard for God,
he stands insolent before him.
He has smooth-talked himself
into believing
That his evil
will never be noticed.
Words gutter from his mouth,
dishwater dirty.
Can’t remember when he
did anything decent.
Every time he goes to bed,
he fathers another evil plot.
When he’s loose on the streets,
nobody’s safe.
He plays with fire
and doesn’t care who gets burned.

Psalm 42 (NRSV)

1As a deer longs for flowing streams,
so my soul longs for you, O God.
2My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
When shall I come and behold the face of God?
3My tears have been my food day and night,
while people say to me continually,
“Where is your God?”
4These things I remember, as I pour out my soul:
how I went with the throng, and led them in procession
to the house of God, with glad shouts and songs of thanksgiving,
a multitude keeping festival.
5Why are you cast down, O my soul,
and why are you disquieted within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my help
6and my God. My soul is cast down within me;
therefore I remember you from the land of Jordan
and of Hermon, from Mount Mizar.
7Deep calls to deep at the thunder of your cataracts;
all your waves and your billows have gone over me.
8By day the Lord commands his steadfast love,
and at night his song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life.
9I say to God, my rock, “Why have you forgotten me?
Why must I walk about mournfully
because the enemy oppresses me?”
10As with a deadly wound in my body,
my adversaries taunt me,
while they say to me continually, “Where is your God?”
11Why are you cast down, O my soul,
and why are you disquieted within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,
my help and my God.

Ruth Jewell, ©November 17, 2015

All Means ALL

All means ALL
All means ALL

My thoughts over the last couple of months have been over whelmed by the violence, the bullying, the tragedy, and the anger that has played across my TV screen, computer, radio and newspaper in the last couple of months.  I have seen the quote by some famous person that reads “those who keep silent in the face of evil are giving their approval,” or the pictures’ displaying one perspective versus another and which one has the greatest validity.  I am left speechless and in pain.  Yes I have heard that even one small act of mercy changes someone and I have used those very words myself many times. Do what you can and ‘wait,’ wait for minds to change, or for hearts to open,  . . . wait for what.

The scripture for Sunday came from Isaiah and begins with “Comfort, O Comfort my people” (40:1), but, I’m sorry I don’t feel that comfort.  I offer prayers, I read, and I listen.  I volunteer at the King County Juvenile Detention Center, here at church, and lead the occasional spiritual retreat and labyrinth walk, yet, except for Juvenile Detention CTR, I feel as if I am “preaching to the choir,” so to speak.  Where in all of these days of suffering, and confusion does the offering come that provides more than my comfort and brings a justly faithful, hopeful, loving comfort to those who do not share my skin color, or language, or culture, or gender, or abilities, or whatever makes them different from the so called “main stream” of the population.

This meditation was intended to be an inspirational moment.  But I am not feeling very inspirational, just too much has happened in the last couple of months.  So I ask your forgiveness for talking through some of my thoughts.  I live in a world that appears to be falling apart as I sit my comfortable, warm home.  I keep asking what will stop the building blocks our lives from tumbling into the abyss.

I am afraid we are headed into a storm of our own making that will destroy us.  We won’t need to be invaded, no; we are doing a grand job of destruction all by ourselves.   Voices of change and compassion, justice, mercy, and peace are drowned out by hateful speech by bullies in high places.  The actions and words of those high placed bullies give permission to those who fear the unknown to be violent and destructive at the ground roots level.  Hateful speech and actions becomes a cancer eating away at our will to fight against justice and mercy.

So I sit in my little home office, offering prayers, and volunteering when the opportunity arises.  I do my small acts that I pray are being added to other small acts, but I don’t know if any of it will be enough. Our denominations GLBQ organization used the slogan “All Means ALL” at our last national General Assembly.  They wanted to get the message across that everyone matters, despite gender identification, skin color, religion, or culture everyone is important.  There are very few slogans I actually believe in, but I believe in that one.  If I can do nothing other than let each and every person know how much they matter in my life, in the life of my Faith Community, and in the life of the greater community we are all part of then I have done the best I can.  That will have to be enough.

Ruth Jewell, ©December 8, 2014