14 January 2018
GraceNotes – A Journey of Discovery
Scripture: Matthew 5:1-12 (Click link for scripture in Bible Gateway)
God blesses those who are hungry and thirsty for justice, for they will receive it in full. (Matthew 5:6 NLT)
I remember riding the city buses with my Mom when I was eight years old, living in a town in Central Texas. White people sat in the front of the buses and “colored” people sat in the back. At the Woolworth’s store there were separate lunch counters for white and “colored” people. Public restrooms and drinking fountains were “Whites Only” or “Colored.” There were only white children in my school. Coming from rural Oregon, I didn’t understand, but accepted. It was the way things were.
The late 50’s and the 60’s were times of turmoil in America as long-standing injustices were fought and to some extent, corrected. The price paid for challenging racial injustice in America was a very high price! That price was paid by people who were “hungry and thirsty” for justice.
In our America there are still injustices: Injustices against women, injustices against religious minorities, injustices against the foreigners God’s Word tells us to protect. Some of these injustices have been corrected in law, some haven’t. But they exist in practice. Many of our injustices of the past are still bearing bitter fruit today. People who “hunger and thirst” for justice more than their own comfort and safety and well-being are still paying the price for justice.
Tomorrow, January 15, is Martin Luther King day in the US. Doctor King stood tall as one who fought injustice and gave his life on the field of battle. Doctor King said, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.”
Note to my readers around the world: You are aware of injustices in your own nation. Pray for God’s Spirit to empower and protect those in your nation who “hunger and thirst” for justice!
Father, May that arc bend more quickly toward justice! May my readers and I hunger and thirst for justice, not so much for ourselves, but for those who are powerless and have no voice to speak for themselves. In the words of the prophet Amos, “I want to see a mighty flood of justice, a river of righteous living that will never run dry.” May it be so quickly, O Father! In Jesus’ Name!