Sunday, February 04, 2007

Sixth Sunday after Epiphany – A

Years A
Deuteronomy 30:15-20
or Sirach 15:15-20
Psalm 119:1-8
1 Corinthians 3:1-9
Matthew 5:21-37


To choose or not to choose: that is the question.

On the one hand, everything depends upon this moment. What we decide will echo on forever. What we decide against is stillborn. All of life hangs in the balance - all of heaven holds it breath. What will they decide?

Here it might be good to listen again to that old hymn, "Once to Every Man and Nation" [written by James Russell Lowell in the Boston Courier, December 11, 1845. Lowell wrote these words as a poem protesting America’s war with Mexico]. What decision is now needed regarding America's preemptive war against Iraq and impending one with Iran? Will you choose to choose it? What else has changed within and around us, leading to new choices.

Will you throw a first stone or a last stone or no stone at all? Does it make any difference whether the issue is personal or communal, spiritual or political (not that these pairs can be separated very well)?

On the other hand, a choice doesn't make the slightest difference. We are simply G*D's servants whether we find ourselves with Apollos or Paul or Amy or Janet or performing one function or another. As a simple servant of G*D, just how much choice does a milk-sucking child have?

Now, when to choose to choose or to choose not to choose, aye - that is a good question. When to say Yes! or No! is both imponderably confusing and intuitionally clear.

= = = = = = =

happy those
who are able to decide
after the fact
Monday-morning quarterback
after the fact
but happier still those
who decide
with an eye to the future
before the fact
that will become an after fact
to move toward a preferred tomorrow
before its factness
is highly satisfying here
decisions take on deep meaning

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