No Ordinary Thursday
Thursday was a day of transcendant moments.
For example, I found myself:
…Catching a portion of the Today Show, as Al Roker traced his family’s roots. Watching, as he stood in the spot in Liverpool where his great grandparents were bought and sold. Watching, as he walked through the fields where they worked under the sun in the Bahamas, no longer in possession of even their own names. Watching his jovial face grow solemn as he gazed upon their slave names in a registry that still testifies of those dark days.
…Waiting for the “The Way Out” hotline phone to ring in a secret place, along with a small team knit together from diverse ends of the church spectrum. Sharing the kind of uproarious laughter that can only arise from hope and deep joy. Singing praise songs and lying on our faces in prayer for the captives to be released from trafficking circles. Waiting, aching, longing for rescue. Hearing the words of the old spiritual in my mind, “When one of us is chained, ain’t none of us is free.”
...Driving home late that night on the deserted post-convention streets of Denver, and finally hearing Barack Obama’s acceptance speech (repeated on CNN late night). Hearing the roar of the crowd as he invoked the memory of Martin Luther King on this anniversary of the “I Have a Dream” speech. Seeing, as the camera panned the audience, a glimpse of a young black man with head bowed and fresh tears on his face. Seeing, a woman who simply stared ahead, shaking her head softly, as if she couldn’t fully take in what was before her.
…Seeing that there was more there than I, as part of privileged white America, can ever fully grasp.
…Wondering. There is something that is far bigger than all of us going on.
“He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. And he stood up to read. The scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written: ”The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”
Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him, and he began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” Luke 4:16-21