“In his teaching and preaching, Jesus was forever calling our attention to the seemingly trivial, the small, and the insignificant—like lost children, lost coins, lost sheep, a mustard seed. The Kingdom involves the ability to see God within those people and experiences [that] the world regards as little and of no account, ordinary” (Stanley Hauerwas and William Willimon in Resident Aliens).
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“People, even more than things. have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone” (Audrey Hepburn).
And here is a comment on this quote from a friend: “I know I need these things in my life – I wear out, am over-loaded, and become frazzled. May we do these things for ourselves and one another – help restore and renew the weary; revive and reclaim those trampled on by injustice and dishonesty; bring respect and honor to each individual; reclaim others as equals and work with God to redeem the floundering and the lost, showing them their incredible value, worth, and ability” (Kathleen Meyer – Van Dyke).
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“The church must be reminded that it is not the master or the servant of the state, but rather the conscience of the state. It must be the guide and the critic of the state, and never its tool. If the church does not recapture its prophetic zeal, it will become an irrelevant social club without moral or spiritual authority. If the church does not participate actively in the struggle for peace and for economic and racial justice, it will forfeit the loyalty of millions and cause men everywhere to say that it has atrophied its will.
But if the church will free itself from the shackles of a deadening status quo, and, recovering its great historic mission, will speak and act fearlessly and insistently in terms of justice and peace, it will enkindle the imagination of mankind and fire the souls of men, imbuing them with a glowing and ardent love for truth, justice, and peace. Men far and near will know the church as a great fellowship of love that provides light and bread for lonely travelers at midnight” (Martin Luther King, Jr. in A Knock at Midnight, June 11, 1967).
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“Life, contrary to popular theory, is not sometimes very, very good, nearly perfect, and at other times really, really bad. I hear gospel preachers say we are now experiencing a dawning of hope as the new administration takes office, while others say this political change represents the most perilous time in our history. Is one story completely right and the other completely wrong? Does any man or woman have the capacity to alter the nature of our inner and outer worlds and change who we are? Rather than blaming or crediting another for a world we see as either wonderful or perilous, perhaps we need to learn to accept responsibility for a world that is both of these at once. . . . No matter what dire situations you see as monopolizing the world, the greater truth is that a light has already dawned in the regions of death. Announce it. Invite others to live in it with you. All is not lost. Now go prove it” (Kayla McClurg, Season and Scripture: Epiphany Year A, Matthew).