Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Lord Of All Being Throned Afar"1 (Lyrics)
Many years ago, I received a phone call from some local disk jockeys at the radio station downtown asking me to gather up what we called a gaggle of politically active older women, to come down when their phone-in program was on air, to stage a fake break-in to the show, and to sing one of our earworm songs about the then current state of public affairs. At that time, we were parodying the tune of "There's a bluebird on your windowsill".
- There's a vulture on your windowsill
There are storm clouds in the sky
Just look around this place we love
It's enough to make you cry.
Homeless folks living in the parks
Hospital waiting lists
Privatizing public trusts
"It's okay," leaders insist.
If we want bluebirds and rainbows back
We have got some work to do
Get this party out of leadership
Before they come for you!
Of course, we were more specific, naming the party and their leaders and "this place we love". Because the actions that we opposed were egregious and because we were actually quiet, community-minded, law-abiding grandmothers, our protests were always peaceful, striving for laughter and enlightenment, never confrontation, conflict, or violence.
It seems to me that Paul laid out the ground rules for peaceful, non-violent protesting in these Scriptures:
Romans 12:9b,17-18 – Hate what is wrong. Stand on the side of the good. Never pay back evil for evil. Do things in such a way that everyone can see you are honest clear through. Don't quarrel with anyone. Be at peace with everyone, just as much as possible. (TLB)
All of this described to me what we were doing by making public fun of the deadly serious political activity that was happening around us. Paul never said, "Just be quiet and let those in authority do whatever they want without any opposition." Protest, thought through, done properly, and first, last, and always, prayerfully, is part of our commitment to being living and holy sacrifices of the kind that God will accept, for then we will know how good and pleasing and perfect His will really is. (Romans 12:1-2)
Prayer: Dear Father God, how the crowds must have laughed with Your Son, Jesus, when He talked about a camel trying to go through the eye of a needle or about a blind man trying to lead another. Thank You for the gifts of humour and gentle peacefulness, open-minded always towards others and the willingness to listen and see another's point of view. Thank You for the opportunity to grow and change as we walk with You today. Amen.