June 16

Jeremiah 20:11-13

“But the Lord is with me like a dread warrior; therefore my persecutors will stumble, and they will not prevail. They will be greatly shamed, for they will not succeed. Their eternal dishonor will never be forgotten.” vs. 11

Through the centuries prophets have clung to their visions and dreams with a tenacious optimism that could not be extinguished even in the face of intense opposition and persecution. Jeremiah was carried away against his will to the land of Egypt. John the Baptist lost his head; Jesus was crucified and Stephen stoned. Their words have become our scriptures! In our times Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech lives on long after his assassination in Memphis. Even now there is a sense that one day bigotry and injustice will be at an end, that there is in our universe a trajectory that leads toward the peaceable kingdom, that goodness will have the last and the triumphant word. Sometimes, when violence erupts and ugly speech is heard, it’s hard to hang on to that optimistic perspective. We say to one another, “Well, this is how it’s always been, and this is the way it will always be! Life will never change.” But that’s not true! Of course there will be backsliding and reversals, human sin is tenacious and slippery, but we can’t give up on the vision. Christ is present in our world and is using even unwilling vessels to bring justice, love and peace to all. The dream is becoming reality!

Thought for the Day: What changes for good have happened in the last 100 years?

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