Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Fourth Sunday after Epiphany - C1

Years C
Jeremiah 1:4-10

Once upon a time I thought it would be more truthful to shift my language away from that of the predominant patriarchy - male language standing for all people.

It was an interesting birthing process that took a fair amount of time.

It began with the conception of the idea. Just even thinking about it took awhile.

In fact it began before conception with the witness of faithful folk.

My first attempts were not very hopeful. I would hear myself sliding back into the old language pattern, time after time. It seemed my best intention had no effect. If Homer Simpson had been around at the time I would have echoed his, "Doh!"

Little by little the time between hearing my slip and the slip itself was reduced. Image the word "his" being recognized closer and closer to my lips.

Then came that awkward moment that lasted, again, all too long, when my mouth wrestled with a caught word. It would still get out but not without a struggle that may have sounded like a stutter.

Eventually the word didn't make it to the mouth and the process continued to before the thought.

What other words and concepts do we need to work at leaving behind, beginning with understanding their desirability before their presence?

PS - actually there are still slips in moments of stress - old tapes don't die they just bide their time.

PPS - We know what needs to be changed, now we just need to begin the formation of a change process in the wombs of our lives.


  1. How does anything you are saying have to do with Jeremiah 1:4-10, or with anything for that matter?

  2. How does anything you are saying have to do with Jeremiah 1:4-10, or with anything for that matter? -anonymous

    Hmm, how does anything have to do with anything? How does a specific something become connected with a general anything? Pretty basic challenging questions.

    I don't think I can justify anything, but here is a bit of the thinking that brought the comment about changing language seemingly out of the blue.

    The other comment on Jeremiah looked at the issue of recording last things first. Often times we are not able to make sense of beginnings until sometime quite a bit later. At what point do we become aware that we have been called. I presume that for some they have a sense of it happening immediately and everything is changed from that moment. Others of us look back further and further and continue to see continuous calls and we come late to the attribution of just when a first conscious call came.

    I then reflected on what else seems to work backward until we can finally say that we have changed. Changing habits seems to change in this fashion. I was reminded then of a change of language habits that took several years to mostly change. Thus came an independent comment that has been questioned regarding its relevance to a specific scripture passage or anything at all.

    One of the mysteries about this process is whether our anonymous friend will ever check back to see if there is a response or whether the terse question left is all the engagement that will happen.

    Another basic question is whether every response is worth a reply? When ought a last word be left to stand as a last word? I guess we will see if this is a last word or only a penultimate one.


  3. I guess we now know.

    Anonymous' rarely if ever return to their sideswipe.


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