Everyday Heroes

1-3By Kenneth McLaughlin of Independence, Missouri, USA

“Here is my servant, whom I have chosen, my beloved, with whom my soul is well pleased. I will put my Spirit upon him, and he will proclaim justice to the Gentiles. He will not wrangle or cry aloud, nor will anyone hear his voice in the streets. He will not break a bruised reed or quench a smoldering wick until he brings justice to victory. And in his name the Gentiles will hope.”  

Matthew 12:18–21

I struck up a conversation with the sacker at our grocery store. A woman in her late-40s, she shared with me that in addition to working there, she held a second job and was a student at a community college. Her younger brother had died the year before, and she found herself (a single woman) guardian of his children, as well as mother to her own. As if that weren’t enough, she was a survivor of breast cancer, now in remission.

“How do you do it?” I asked. She quickly described her various sources of income and the fact the kids were well behaved and expected to contribute to the well-being of the family. And she had the support and respect of an extended family and circle of friends.

“You are my hero,” I declared. She found my statement odd, particularly as I asked her if I could mention her in my future sermons, classes, and writings. “Sure,” she said, “but all I’m doing is what I have to do—one day at a time.”

Each day, everyday heroes are all around us. These are ordinary women and men, boys and girls, who simply are doing what they feel called to do. They are the salt of the earth, and the ones who not only talk about the will of God, but do it.

May we each do what we have to do to bring justice for all of God’s creation.

Prayer for Peace
God of all, may we look for heroes. May we show appreciation for how they share Christ’s peace through their work.

Spiritual Practice: Welcoming Unity in Diversity
Meditate on Unity in Diversity. Create a large circle with your arms. See and feel the diverse people God invites inside the sanctuary of Christ’s peace represented by this circle.

Who is easiest to welcome? Whom do you struggle to include? Confess the dividing walls between you and people too different or “dangerous” to invite into your spiritual home. Ask God to forgive and heal barriers that keep you and others from being one in Christ’s peace.

Peace Covenant
Today, God, I will look past the uniforms of invisibility and take interest in someone’s life.

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