Friday, December 18, 2009

Some children . . .

Some children see Him lily white,the baby Jesus born this night.
Some children see Him lily white,with tresses soft and fair.
Some children see Him bronzed and brown, The Lord of heav'n to earth come down.
Some children see Him bronzed and brown, with dark and heavy hair.
Some children see Him almond-eyed, this Savior whom we kneel beside.some children see Him almond-eyed,with skin of yellow hue.
Some children see Him dark as they, sweet Mary's Son to whom we pray.
Some children see him dark as they, and, ah! they love Him, too!
The children in each different place will see the baby Jesus' face like theirs, but bright with heavenly grace, and filled with holy light.
O lay aside each earthly thing and with thy heart as offering,
come worship now the infant King.
'Tis love that's born tonight!
Several years ago at one of the churches I served, a couple asked if they might do some special music the Sunday before Christmas . . . "of course if it is appropriate" . . . they assured me it was appropriate . . . tears flowed as I heard them sing these lyrics . . . and it reminded me of another song . . . Jesus loves the little children, all the children of the world . . . did you know this is just the refrain to a hymn written to the tune of a Civil War song . . . there are verses, yes, verses . . . and there is an alternative refrain. . . Jesus died for all the children,All the children of the world. Red and yellow, black and white, All are precious in His sight, Jesus died for all the children of the world.
Powerful words and powerful reminders that Jesus is Lord of all colors of people . . . . as members of the One Family of God adopted by God through the person and work of Jesus Christ, especially His work on the cross can't the Church work harder to end racism and hatred?
Perhaps this is the gift that we need to pursue with all we are.
For God so loved the world . . .

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Instant Karma . . .

John Lennon wrote those lyrics . . . do I believe in karma like the Hindus do, no, but these is a saying my Mama taught me . . . she learned it from her Sunday School teacher when she was a little girl . . . she celebrates her 84th tomorrow . . . oh, what she learned: "be careful your sins will find you out." Is this in the Bible . . . no, I don't think these word are, but I think we have some evidence that there are consequences for things that we choose to do . . . Joseph's brothers, David and I am sure that there are many, many other examples that bear this out in Scripture and I am sure that we have all had experiences of this in our own lives.
Whether this is an example or not it is about what goes around comes around . . . more than 3 and 1/2 decades later (if my math is correct!?) When I was in 9th grade I liked a boy named Billy, a foot ball player . . . he liked a friend of mine, Chris . . . now Chris was a cheerleader, cute and outgoing . . . on the other hand, I eschewed football, was OK looking and introverted . . . Billy and Chris started dating . . . I was mad and wanted to get back at Chris for "stealing" Billy . . . so one day in Home Economics we were baking cakes from scratch . . . I waited for the opportunity to switch Chris' baking power for baking soda . . . her cake failed to rise.
I remembered this incident early this morning . . . I don't bake often but decided to bake some Christmas bread while visiting my family . . . so yesterday morning I got all my ingredients together . . . mixed them together . . . put the loaf pans in the oven . . . an hour later I check them . . . they don't appear to be rising as much as they should . . . after they are baked I look at them . . . flat. Later in the evening we go ahead and have a slice . . . although it didn't rise it tasted OK . . . about 2am this morning I woke up went to the pantry . . . yes, I had used baking soda instead of baking powder . . . and then I remembered Chris' face when Mrs. Neighbors graded her cake . . . "F." Chris and Billy are married and one of the few couples I know of from high school who are still living happily ever after.
Maybe the Golden rule of treating others as you would like to be treated isn't such a bad thing . . . most of the world religions have a similar concept . . . what might the world look like if we were to all live like this?