Where You Go, I Will Go

Episode 14

Lectionary Reading:

Ruth 1:1-18

Psalm 146

Mark 12:28-34

Reflection:

The story of scripture is a story that says “I see you”, and a story that acts from that foundational acknowledgement. It is a story that acknowledges the interconnected nature of all of our sufferings, and our joys. In the midst of these three lectionary readings, we see the story of a God that is subverts the social norm, challenges the structures in power, and asks us to walk this road together.

As we acknowledge the heaviness of the last few weeks, and the past few days with the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting, antisemitism, the consistent anti-Trans and anti-LGBTQ+ rhetoric, and the lack of compassion and goodness extended to those fleeing violence, nearing our southern border, we take a moment to allow our bodies to feel their experience fully. To acknowledge tension or heaviness in the diverse ways our unique body speaks to the rest of us. Take a moment to acknowledge how you’re feeling, taking note of any tension or heaviness that you physically feel.

God, Creator, Giver of Good, we bring our bodies into this holy space, right now. We acknowledge that our experience is more than just what we read, or feel emotionally, but also how we embody those things. We ask for a blessing on our bodies and the ways they allow us to engage with the world around us, and to experience hope and goodness. Amen.

As we have invited our bodies into this space fully, I think the story of this week’s lectionary is one that does the same. It is one that reflects the character of God as one who cares deeply for the bodily and incarnated experience of our lives; our humanity. We see this in the person of Jesus; a perfect one who inhabited an imperfect world, human skin, an unjust death.

The verses in Mark reflect the importance of our call as people of God - people of hope, truth, goodness. We seek to love God, and love others - with everything we have. But what does that mean?

To love God, we see what to do reflected in Psalm 146; we welcome the stranger, and execute justice for the oppressed (and support and stand for movements that do).

To love others, we see what to do in Ruth 1; your journey is my journey, and our experiences - both our sufferings and our joys - are intertwined.

The experience of humans begins with the foundational acknowledgement that says “I see you”, and it moves us to action from there.

Friends, may we embody action in the ways we are able this week. May the Spirit of a just, holy, righteous God fill our spirits with boldness and truth. And may that same Spirit guide us as we confront hatred, violence, and evil amidst systems of oppressions that target trans folks and people of color - black, brown, indigenous, aapi, immigrants and beyond.

May we walk this road together, making our voices loud, and our resolve to stand firm, even louder.

Go in peace.

Lauren Ileana Sotolongo

Co-Executive Director, Brave Commons