Prophecy

Jim Gallagher 11-10-2015

Image via Roberto Rodriguez / St. Louis Post-Dispatch / RNS

Hollywood star Denzel Washington, the son of a pastor, preached a sermon of gratefulness Nov. 7 to hundreds of members of the Church of God in Christ at their annual Holy Congregation in downtown St. Louis.

“I pray that you put your slippers way under your bed at night, so that when you wake in the morning you have to start on your knees to find them. And while you’re down there, say thank you,” he told the crowd at a $200-a-plate banquet at the Marriott St. Louis Grand Hotel to raise money for the denomination’s charity work.

“It is impossible to be grateful and hateful at the same time,” he said.

“We have to have an attitude of gratitude.”

Eric Barreto 12-08-2014
Photo via Prixel Creative / Shutterstock.com

Photo via Prixel Creative / Shutterstock.com

You don’t want God to ask you to be a prophet. You really don’t.

When God calls you to some holy task, you might expect a contemplative path, a quiet life of service, and love of neighbor. You might expect a comfortable life of piety and hopefulness, grace, and caring.

But true prophets know better.

Prophets tend not to have such idyllic hopes for God’s call. Prophets know too well that the call of God to speak hard truths is paved with difficulty. The prophet’s road is lonely not because she escapes the hubbub of everyday life in order to retreat and draw near to God. No, the prophet’s road is lonely because she is called to the most troubled corners of the world, places which existence we would rather deny or ignore. The prophet’s road is lonely because she must speak boldly to an upside-down world that doesn’t realize it is upside-down. The prophet sees the world as it really is while we see the prophet and marvel that she is walking on the ceiling.

In our readings for this week, we encounter two prophets who speak bold words to a world predisposed to ignore them. We encounter two prophets who speak a word of deliverance to the downtrodden and judgment upon the powerful. We encounter two prophets engaged with the most pressing matters of all. We encounter two prophets that we still refuse to heed.

Gary M. Burge 03-01-2011
I've been fascinated watching an earlier blog hunker down into a strong debate about Israel and the Palestinians (February 22, "http://blog.sojo.net/2011/02/22/when-will-3-5-million-palest
Crissy Brooks 04-28-2010
When I was in second grade handball was all the rage. We played it with big red rubber balls against backboards on the playground.
Ryan Rodrick Beiler 04-14-2010

Last weekend I was at a family reunion where I had been invited to show pictures from my sabbatical in the Middle East last spring.

Ruth Hawley-Lowry 01-15-2010

This year, as we celebrate the birth of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. we are too often tempted to celebrate what has been achieved rather than examine what God continues to call out of us. Hopefully we know that there is no such thing as "post-racial," even after the election of an African American president.

Jim Wallis 10-13-2009
I got the first call at 6:30 a.m.
Gareth Higgins 05-28-2009
A couple of weeks ago on Glenn Beck's talk radio show, a woman called in to suggest that because President Obama appears to be raising the tax rate to around the same as what it was under President
Brian McLaren 04-16-2009

I've written a lot on Palestine and Gaza in recent years. Any of us who travel (or read) know that peace in the world can't be separated from peace in Israel -- peace for Jews, and peace for Muslim and Christian Palestinians.

Mimi Haddad 04-02-2009
Many of us were raised in churches that taught that women should be silent in the church because of the teachings of Paul in 1 Corinthians 14:34.
Laurel A. Dykstra 06-01-2008

We have returned now to what some churches call “ordinary time,” a designation more to do with the numbering of weeks than a plain or mundane time.

Laurel A. Dykstra 12-01-2007

December 1 is World AIDS Day. Worldwide, 15 million children have lost one or both parents to the AIDS pandemic; in Zimbabwe, one in five children are orphans.

Julie Polter 12-01-2007

The prophetic voice of abolitionist Maria W. Stewart.

Reflections on the Revised Common Lectionary Cycle C.
Ched Myers 07-01-2006
To wade in the water is to be immersed in our Lord's perverse ethic of gain through loss.
Robert Roth 12-01-2005
Peace, salvation, and the reign of God arrive with beauty and song.
Elizabeth Palmberg 03-01-2005
The Micah Challenge calls evangelicals to get serious about bringing good news to the poor.
Jim Wallis 01-01-2003

Whatever Christians decide about war with Iraq, they must do it on the basis of Christian theology.

Bob Hulteen 07-01-1998

Within the Christian tradition, rarely is a concept more misunderstood than prophecy. Unfortunately, this misinterpretation wreaks havoc on our society in the form of doomsday soothsayers, apocalyptic dreamers, and militant revolutionaries.

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