Yesterday I participated in an interfaith forum. There were four of us presenting: a Jewish Rabbi, a Hindu, a Muslim and me, the Christian rep. We each spoke for ten minutes or so fegarding our faith tradition and its teachings about poverty. Following our presentation, we responded to questions raised by folks in the room.
It was a rich experience. The hospitality was warm and the appreciation for such a gathering lent shimmer to the event.
What I came to know about myself is this: I begin from the place of the power of Jesus’ social teachings. Built upon the strength of his Hebrew roots, Jesus had much to say about how it is being God’s beloveds means we live with an awareness of our connection in community.
I suggested more than once that if we organized: within our faith traditions and across our faith traditions, the structures that create the blight of poverty would be dismantled. It was a novel concept to some, this notion of joined power and civic impact.
We have a long way to go. But if we are not willing to lean into our faith teachings and bring them into the light of day of lived values, I figure we ought close the doors of the busily kept up temples and churches and content ourselves with a world we are not much thrilled about leaving to our children and grandchildren.
We are rich in instruction and promise. Will we summon the imagination and faith to live it?
What I experienced yet again is the conviction that the teachings of Jesus are sufficient for this task. And I learned that I am oh so hungry for a movement of folk who see the oughtness of fully lived Christian life.