Thanksgiving and the world situation


To the Editor:

We seem to be coming apart at the seams — everyone retreating to their corners, unwilling to talk or have any element of trust for another opinion. And to top it all off, people seem more and more willing to consider violence and revenge as a means of making their point.

Israel treats Palestinians as second-class citizens, Hamas attacks Israel, Israel kills thousands in Gaza. Hatred grows.

Russia wants more territory, and attacks Ukraine. Ukraine has to fight back.

Youngsters and adults who think they have been wronged respond with killing sprees.

Some try to gain power by stealing or greed, treating employees as second-class citizens, or otherwise ignoring moral values and needs for integrity, compassion, commitment to others.

Out for No. 1 seems to be a growing reality.

Others consider the environment as something they can abuse without repercussions. They use manufacturing and marketing strategies just for personal gain, and with no responsibility for the Earth.

We continue to distrust and hate people of different races and religions. Various scriptures are used to justify violence. Guns continue to be widely available on our streets.

Others just fade into the background, for lack of hope.

To put it in a nutshell, we have forgotten God.

Mindfulness, intuition, finding your inner self are all wonderful, useful tools — even of God! But the results need to drive us to help humanity too!

Love is at the center of our universe. Even if you don’t think that, the very fact you can be against that idea is because it exists. And it is worth pursuing, because hate will destroy us.

To move forward, we need to acknowledge our mistakes and limitations. We also need to reflect honestly about our peace, and what we have hardened our hearts to … Are we cynical about hope, love, honesty? Do we seek a peaceful heart? Are we praying to find solutions to what’s driving our isolation, defensiveness, or cynicism? Are we aware of our own hurts?

Asking forgiveness and giving forgiveness is an expression of love for ourselves and others. It often comes from seeking what we truly hunger for, rather than what we settle for. Inner peace comes — sometimes after tears of reconciliation and gratitude —- as we allow dependence on a loving universe. It is a mystery, but, be encouraged, God will be there to meet us on our knees. We cannot change the world, but we can change our own approach.

We can be truly thankful for our blessings — and move forward with that “ground of being” — when we ask and allow God to work with us, granting us peace and hope.

As the song says, “Come, ye thankful people, come …”

P.S.: Forgiveness is a huge topic — read Bishop Desmond Tutu’s “Book of Forgiving.”


Rev. Susan Waldrop