While I was in seminary I worked at the Wolcott Baptist Mission. (The picture in this blog is of that little church. The children used some clay from the grounds to form and fire this sculpture for me). This was the best thing God could have ever done for me. It was my first church located in a valley about 25 miles west of Kansas City, Kansas. I was director, pastor, and fellow worker to a migrant community that moved into that area in the spring and throughout the fall to harvest melons, radishes, and cabbages.
To better understand the process I too would work in the field. Now I should pause and say that is really a lie. I did no work! I would attempt to labor alongside the kids but there is no way what I did could ever be described as work compared to those I hoped to serve. I would have to stop often, and sometimes crawl my way along watching them all leave me behind as they had a quota to keep. But they put up with me, were kind to me and for a brief time God blessed our efforts together. Most of all I learned some things about me!
Cesar Chavez said, “When we are really honest with ourselves, we must admit that our lives are all that really belong to us. So it is how we use our lives that determines what kind of men we are. It is my deepest belief that only by giving our lives do we find life. I am convinced that the truest act of courage, the strongest act of manliness is to sacrifice ourselves for others in totally nonviolent struggle for justice. To be a man is to suffer for others. God help us to be men!”
As you travel this path today look for injustice…maybe just maybe you have been closing your eyes. Ask for God’s forgiveness and look around seeking opportunities to labor alongside another in order to bring about change both in the situation and in yourself. Ask today for our loving Savior to guide your hands, your feet, to heal sore backs, to direct your stumbling feet. May my Jesus help you to bring healing to another today. Amen.