We read of many lives, as the emails come. So many brave people. We feel the honor of their friendship. So many of you are livers of faith in the living of your lives. Courage to you as you carry on.
And some come to see us. When it’s both Molly and me they can hardly get a word in edgewise. We are excited to see them, moved by their stories, touched deeply by their courage, so grateful to learn from them.
We are tempted to be sad at where we’re not. But then, I look down into our garden courtyard and I thank God for where we are.
The Rotary magazine in June had a wonderful article on friendship, of how Rotary started when a lonely man dared to enter into friendship. And I realized how many there are surrounding us here, just waiting to be our friends. We need to take time to reach out and listen. I hope you’ve had some surprising offers of friendship that have come to fill and bless your day.
You may not realize how many need you. Yes, you – to be their friend. They don’t announce their need. But so often you can see it in their faces – the hope they’re feeling that you’ll stop and make a gesture in their direction, and that a word, or a touch, will start something so good.
People’s need is physical, and spiritual – not just incidental. A person came the other day to talk, all dressed up in summer wear. But, how heavy was her heart. What pains she bore for the world all around us. She had need, but also so much to give. Sharing that blessed us both and made me feel I needed to commit to being her friend in the new ways she needed.
When we worry about our country and what’s happening to it, and about the church in America, and even our own church, and wonder what we can do about it, God’s example, through Jesus, is that we start right where we are, with people in need before our eyes, or with injustices being perpetrated in our presence, or hypocrisies of our religious leader out in public where people gather. Remember that Jesus once went into the temple and threw over the tables of the money-changers, saying, “You make my house a den of thieves.” He told it like it was. He knew the consequences. But He didn’t shrink from the truth.
Do we dare to stand up and demand fair play and justice on the spot? – We could do it. You dared to follow Him.
The world around us soon would be a different place. It would respond to what’s real and true.
And so might grow stronger and bolder in the doing. Who knows how far the changes we make might go? There would be a price. But also a reward: Jesus’ commendation – “WELL DONE, GOOD AND FAITHFUL SERVANT.”
Love you all,
Arthur A Rouner, Jr -
|Arthur Rouner Ministries||
ARTHUR ROUNER MINISTRIES