March 22, 2021
Shalom: The Way to Repairing (Week 5)
Repairers always face opposition

"When justice is done, it is a joy to the righteous but terror to evildoers." 
Proverbs 21:15

This passage in Proverbs gives us a startling and sobering reminder that when seeking to repair the world, not everyone welcomes progress. Jesus saw this as he made his way to the cross, encountering opposition along the way from those in power who wanted the status quo to remain as such. This is a concept that is important to understand as we continue to move forward in our fight for justice and equality for all people.

Our country was built on an ideology of power which created a dichotomy of “those who have” and “those who have not.” This dichotomy says in order for “those who have” to have power and resources, they must take from “those who have not.” This unhealthy understanding led to the oppression of many groups of people through stealing land and enslavement.

Though these atrocities occurred long ago, the ideology from our founding is still deeply embedded in the fabric of our country. Some Americans still hold to that ideology. Because of this, though, some will rejoice for progress; others will fear progress and perceive it as a threat to their way of life. But regardless of the resistance, we must continue in our call to seek justice for those who are oppressed.

Lord, as we continue to fight for justice, let us hold those who resist with love and compassion, but continue to fight for what is right and set at liberty those who are oppressed. In Christ’s name, we pray. Amen.
About the authors:
The Rev. Jimmie Hawkins, director of the Presbyterian Office of Public Witness in Washington, D.C., is joined by colleagues Catherine Gordon, associate for international issues; Christian Brooks, representative for domestic poverty issues; Sue Rheem, representative for the United Nations; and Ivy Lopedito, a mission specialist for the United Nations, in writing this year’s devotional. The Office of Public Witness is the denomination’s advocate and social witness in Washington, D.C. Learn more.
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