God of wind and rain, sun and moon, peaks and valleys, frozen tundra and arid plains, God of all creation:
Some of us are in Texas recovering from the worst storm the state has ever seen rain and rising waters flooded lives washed out fortunes futures great and meager;
some of us are in Florida at this very moment huddling in homes in shelters fleeing in cars as a natural disaster aided by human folly pounds preparations into submission;
some of us are in parts of the world ravaged repeatedly by the elements with little or no ability to do anything but suffer; some of us are in the most secure buildings on the planet in the District of Columbia with the power and authority to make decisions that could ease the suffering of the whole world by restraining our wanton disregard of the integrity of creation in favor of unbridled access to its treasures, damn the consequences.
All of us are your people, one God one human family one earth one destiny one moment to decide, this one—ever this one—to be good stewards of your gifts to live with and for one another caring about our future more than our thirst for vengeance of real and perceived injustices in our history.
Altered borders, flags, monuments, toxic and twisted meanings, the distortions and inventions the past, the infected wounds of then now conspire to keep us apart build ever new walls expel the other who is brother sister child and parent friend, not stranger. Where does this end God? What is our part?
God help us pray our way, find our way back to each other; descendant from one human life, one spiritual home, one wondrous beginning. Help us to stand before one another and say our truth in love for the justice that each deserves and the peace that follows. Amen.
The Rev. Michael Livingston is Executive Minister at The Riverside Church, NYC.