Kindness, Lepers and Purple

This morning I read Galatians… St Paul describes our ‘sinful nature’, making a list of its characteristics:

‘…sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like…’

I watch the news and see injustice, aggression, selfishness and suffering. It seems that this destructive, powerful, sinful nature is everywhere.

Three things helped redress the balance for me yesterday:

Kindness… Watching last night’s local news… a report on a ’12 hour wrapathon’ in Ipswich today.

There were pictures of a large school hall with lots of tables with Sellotape and Christmas wrapping paper: ‘We are looking for 180 volunteers to wrap 7000 Christmas presents for the children of Ukraine.’

Gifts have been donated by the charity ‘Kids Out’, transport organised by ‘Ardent Hire’, the project co-ordinated by ‘Rotary International’…

Musing… active human kindness and empathy.

Lepers… Reading about ‘The Poor Sisters of St Francis’… founded in 1854 by Mary Frances Schervier to serve the poor. Following the example of Jesus who helped the leper, they ask, ‘Who are today’s lepers?’

In the 1850s they cared for prostitutes and those suffering from syphilis; they founded hospitals for those with tuberculosis. In more recent years they’ve cared for those living and dying with HIV/AIDS and provided support for refugees and asylum seekers.

Musing… intentional, proactive, positive discrimination.

Purple… Remembering ‘The Color Purple’… There has been continuing injustice, prejudice, suffering, and sadness. Finally there’s reconciliation and resolution. Celie sings:

Dear God, dear stars, dear trees, dear sky
Dear peoples, dear everything, dear God
God is inside me and everyone else
That was or ever will be

I came into this world with God
And when I finally looked inside, I found it
Just as close as my breath is to me…

Like the color purple
Where do it come from?
Now my eyes are open
Look what god has done…

Musing… resolution and the presence of a good god.

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