It is a beautiful autumn day in the Upstate of South Carolina. Though a tad chilly, I have the door open in my home study, light and air pouring in. My two cats are sitting right at the screen door, taking it all in. Dappled light and shadowed leaves dance on the floor. And for the first time since I moved into this home well over a year ago, I can hear the unmistakable sounds of children at play, the song of their voices winding through the thick woods behind our house from the elementary school on the other side.
All these things bless me as I sit reading news and unending analyses of the recent anti-Semitic terror attack on Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, of vitriolic rhetoric become fatal violence—again and again—all over the U.S. Like many here in the U.S., I am soul-sick.
Grief is certainly warranted. But immobility is a luxury we cannot afford.
In the wake of the synagogue shooting, a saying from the Talmud, part of Judaism’s sacred teachings, has been making the rounds on social media (sadly in some cases without attribution). It encourages us to be motivated rather than daunted by the world’s grief. To “do justly, love mercy, and walk humbly” in this moment, however we can… however you-uniquely-you can… however I can. We are called to participate in the mending of the world, using our best gifts.
What those gifts are may not be immediately clear, especially if we are caught up in the media aftermath. Stepping away from the media frenzy and claiming some quiet to discern your gifts for mending is one of the most sacred things you can do right now.
What small but irreplaceable threads shall you offer to the mending?