Freedom of speech is not free. Not because has been purchase by so many great souls, but because it challenges us to put into action the very words we speak.
If you desire or pray for the healing of loved ones, nations, communities, ect. by using words, then you are the one responsible to make it happen. Don't assume someone will do it for you.
If you do not like that homeless live just a few blocks away from your safe home then get to work to create a safe home for them to call home. If you do not like the idea of a kind and gentle person (no different than you) dying from starvation or dyhydration then remember you have the power and the resources to change the way we feed and quench the thirst of all human beings.
"And the king will answer them, just as you did it to one of the least of these who are mebers of my family you you did to me." (Mt. 25:45)
Imagine, just for a moment, Jesus is a King who decides who lives in his kingdom and who is cast out based simply on the merits of how one treats the king's subjects. Does that not suggest there is considerable weight on how we treat the Jesús' of the world?
Likewise, our freedom of speech weights heavily on our actions. Violent words beget more violence, but loving words create more love. Action produces a re-action. Words are an active participation, not simply sounds we utter. While you are free to speak, you are also free to remain silent. And even in a free democracy, both require a sacrifice of one kind or another.
The Freedom of Life is not free. Nor is the freedom of speech. Like those who cannot afford to speak freely without the fear of persecution, there are those in our free country who cannot afford to live freely as so many of us live. They need our help,not just our words. More often than not, they need a helping hand, and not simply a government handouts, although that is a step.
The action of human kindness from those who are willing to put their words into action creates the re-action of transformation. An open mouth should be like an open heart, free to give love to those in need and take love from those whom we seek love of our own.
"Love towards God cannot consist without charity towards neighbor." - William Ames
You are more than just a name, you are a person in the same way those around you are.
You are more then an income, skin color, education, or any other status title. You are a beloved creature and child of God.
The only thing that separates you from them is you. Not your money, ethnicity, or religious conviction.
The gift of life has been given graciously to everyone and so hoarding it is meaningless. Your blessings must be shared to truly appreciate who you are and what you have been called to do. Likewise, you must also be willing to accept that which is given to you.
Charity is not a handout but a kindness and a reminder of the gift that was given to you. Share it as God has shared it with you. That is to say, in abundance.
To be a witness for God is to be a living sign of God's presence in the world. What we live is more important than what we say, because the right way of living always leads to the right way of speaking. When we forgive our neighbours from our hearts, our hearts will speak forgiving words. When we are grateful, we will speak grateful words, and when we are hopeful and joyful, we will speak hopeful and joyful words.
When our words come too soon and we are not yet living what we are saying, we easily give double messages. Giving double messages - one with our words and another with our actions - makes us hypocrites. May our lives give us the right words and may our words lead us to the right life.
Because we have a voice, we can create theological and moral categories that can change the way people see the world. Sometimes, that voice is spoken with our mouth, and sometimes with our eyes, and sometimes with our smile and sometimes with our hands. But always first, it is spoken from the heart.
Wendell Berry wrote this poem for The Progressive Magazine. Please share.
Food for thought:
1. How much poison are you willing
to eat for the success of the free
market and global trade? Please
name your preferred poisons.
2. For the sake of goodness, how much
evil are you willing to do?
Fill in the following blanks
with the names of your favorite
evils and acts of hatred.
3. What sacrifices are you prepared
to make for culture and civilization?
Please list the monuments, shrines,
and works of art you would
most willingly destroy.
4. In the name of patriotism and
the flag, how much of our beloved
land are you willing to desecrate?
List in the following spaces
the mountains, rivers, towns, farms
you could most readily do without.
5. State briefly the ideas, ideals, or hopes,
the energy sources, the kinds of security,
for which you would kill a child.
Name, please, the children whom
you would be willing to kill.
An ex-copywriter turned punk rock pastor and peacemaker who dedicates his life to making the world a better place for all humanity.
"...how he went about doing good..."