As 2020 comes to a close, we journey together into a New Year with monumental challenges and opportunities. Our prayer today is that these words from Representative John Lewis — now one of the Saints in light — will help guide our feet on the pathway forward as we walk in the way of love … following the One who loved us enough to become one of us in order to show us how to love one another.
Study the path of others
to make your way easier and more abundant.
Lean toward the whispers of your own heart,
discover the universal truth,
and follow its dictates.
Know that the truth always leads to love
and the perpetuation of peace.
Its products are never bitterness and strife.
Clothe yourself in the work of love,
in the revolutionary work
of nonviolent resistance against evil.
Anchor the eternity of love in your own soul
and embed this planet with goodness.
Release the need to hate,
to harbor division,
and the enticement of revenge.
Release all bitterness.
Hold only love, only peace in your heart,
knowing that the battle of good to overcome evil
is already won.
Choose confrontation wisely, John Lewis with Brenda Jones, Across That Bridge: A Vision for Change and the Future of America (Hachette Books: 2017, ©2012), 208.
but when it is your time
don’t be afraid to stand up, speak up,
and speak out against injustice.
And if you follow your truth
down the road to peace and the affirmation of love,
if you shine like a beacon for all to see,
then the poetry of all the great dreamers and philosophers
is yours to manifest in a nation,
a world community,
and a Beloved Community
that is finally at peace with itself.