Standing As Witness And In Prayer

Yesterday I went to Austin, my state’s capitol. I went there to lobby with a group of people – to speak out against SB6. Four of my church member’s went as well. Unfortunately this wasn’t a time when we could hang together and do this important work. I would say that our bonding came through the fact that we were simply there at the same time. Not everyone can take time out of their day to make their voices heard and their bodies seen. But yesterday we were able to.

Will this make a difference to our representatives? Have we altered how they think or how they will cast their votes? We don’t know. But, not only did we bond with each other, we bonded with over a 1000 other people. Some of whom we knew. Most of whom we didn’t. I will not recognize them in the park, in a restaurant, or while pumping gas. That doesn’t mean we weren’t changed by each other’s presence, voice, and heart.

My face tingles uncomfortably from the sunburn that reminds me of my standing as a witness during the rally. It has been a long time since I have shown up for an occasion like this. While I have never lobbied at a capitol building before I have attended and helped organze similar events. My sunburn reminds me that I stood witness yesterday but it also reminds me that it took many people to make yesterday happen. Organizers. Speakers. Leaders. I am deeply grateful for them.

Because I am grateful and because I know what it takes to make an event like this happen, I am sending prayers out on behalf of those leaders who test their mettle every day to make a difference. Lately I have heard people speak out that we don’t need prayers … we need action. I believe we need both. And I believe, when done in certain ways, prayer is action. It lays a foundation from which strength and compassion spring. It also creates a softer landing for those who finally allow themselves a moment of rest. That which is invisible is not ineffectual. 

I know that I was propped up yesterday by prayers – my own and those of others. Thank you to whoever you are. Standing as witness in a prayerful way takes a little bit of strength. That said, I saw so many drawing on inner and unknown strength as they moved the crowd physically, spiritually, emotionally, and intellectually. As we consider our resources and how we can be involved, please don’t discount the power of prayer – of interceding – of loving beyond the boundaries of time and space. It makes a difference.

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6 responses to “Standing As Witness And In Prayer

  1. Your two last sentences are so profound. We can’t discount any action, small or large. Especially, those very important actions taken on behalf of social justice and inequality.
    “It makes a difference”
    Thank you for your words.
    -Christine

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  2. You bring up a very important point. We all can’t go and stand like you did but we can pray for those who do and to help change the minds of those you are protesting for. Thanks for letting up know and just think you got your first sunburn of the season by doing something you are passionate about. I am sure there will be many more to come!

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  3. I am proud of your bold witness, in an odd way glad of the sunburn that reminds you of the experience – sometimes after the fact doing these bold public actions can seem surreal. Blessings on you ~ it DOES make a difference!

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  4. Thank you Reverend for representing my views and being my voice. I wanted so much to be there too. I continue to pray and will continue to pray.

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  5. We felt like a part of a family community being there with other Plymouth UCC family folks, but we also knew we were there among over 1000 potential close friends and family. We were so glad to see so many clergy, so many “in their work clothes.” And, as I always do, “I think of all of those not there” and say a prayer for them. Some won’t be there for fear, because of death, because of poverty and not having freedom to be off of work. We are so glad we could be there together for our voices to be heard and for others who cannot speak for themselves. #glbTSiblings

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