Transcript for November 1, 2009 by Bob Kleinheksel
Trees, tormented by tempest, now fully and shyly disrobe before us, revealing boney branches skyward as if beckoning for clarity on how these changes could come about. Yet, nature knows and does not begrudge or hang on with screaming death cry – as leaves fall and collect, wet and wrinkled, returning to dirt and mystery. Like the leaves, we return now to the paths of our lives which include birth and endings, rebirth, newness, maturity and acceptance.
God of love, in love, as love. Love within, between and beyond – in self worth, the exchange of souls between us, in mystery and nature. One by one we come to remember we’re healing the world one heart at a time. Let us be humbled by this joy and challenge, to lean close to each other and to abide in love – this love pervasive in and through all people and things. For in this other we find ourselves. We are intimately connected in blood, bone, gene and cell. We are too similar to hold hostilities, to battle, bear grudges and dwell in negativity.
We gather here to learn and grow, to be connected to each other and comforted by each other; to be welcomed and to belong. We offer our respect and patience, our openness and care, in our varied forms of engagement with each other, even when we disagree. So let us honor the difference and celebrate what unites us. We sustain unity without uniformity; we invite and enjoy diversity without divisiveness. We bring our fullest selves to the altar of humanity; unleashing creativity, voice, service and spirit for the benefit of all.
The conviction and perspective I hold within me honors the conviction and perspective within you.
Just as I maintain what is meaningful for me, I honor what is meaningful for you.
The freedom I enjoy to quest and question meets the freedom you have to do the same.
In asserting our own joys, we need not rob others of their joy and what is important for them.
Let us with care and respect stand up when needed and let go in order to maintain ties with others.
Let us experience divine presence in everyone and treat others as if we are the others.
Through our disagreements and warm kinship, we let unconditional love shine through. Beyond ego, self-centeredness, beyond arrogance and the need to be right – let us let go to see in the other essential beauty, to see ourselves in the other. We don’t always need to battle. Can we be lovers, to choose love, to live love – even if others consign us to the hell they believe? And let us not fall into the trap of turning disagreement into disapproval. May we be forgiven of the struggles we perpetuate; the smugness that creeps in with apparent rightness; the belittlement of another’s opinion. This need not be. For we are fellow human beings, wanting the same things . . . in our dreams and hopes. We are fearful followers and courageous leaders both. We cling to certainties; we enjoy ambiguity and the gray corners and dilemmas of our lives. So let us not take too much personally, but rather abide in agreement and difference. To discern between taking stands and turning cheeks so that we all . . .
Limp on toward justice, lurch ahead with both gumption and grace, lean into love, and see beyond dogma to abide with what we have in common. All of this is really not as serious as we make it to be, yet important enough to take great care with both friends and enemies alike. Amen.