Steven Charleston, "Hope as Old as Fire"
I am a genealogist. Therefore, I am a reader of obituaries This week I found an obituary for a 15-year-old boy, the son of a casual friend from Groveland. The friend and his wife had been through some traumatic health issues in their lives before this child was born. He was their only child, his father's constant companion at least through the early years of his life. Now he is gone.
A remark made by a friend on a memorial page said, "If only you had someone close to talk to ...." Someone else said, "If only you knew how many people cared." Would he still be with us if he had heard the message of which Bishop Charleston reminds us? If one person has stepped over the thresholds of his hurt to share a message of love?
Don't blame the parents. 15-year-olds don't often hear their parents. If they did, Ray and I wouldn't have had so many 14 to 17 year olds as crisis intervention foster kids. But those same teens listen to their friends, their schoolmates, their scout leaders, their teachers. They listen to strangers, to recording artists.
Dare to be the truth. Dare to share the work of justice. Dare to share the love. Step over the threshold.
Don't forget to pray....
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