I just got back from leading a high school mission and service trip to Wanblee, SD in the heart of the Pine Ridge reservation (more on that another time). While I was there, one of the leaders read the following blessing at the end of a worship service. It really spoke to me, and I thought it would serve as a good introduction to what I anticipate will be a series of blog entries about my time there...we experienced so much in that short week, it will honestly take a bit of processing for me. So much pain and hopelessness--and yet, so much of God's face at the same time.
May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers, half truths, and superficial relationships, so that you may live deep within your heart.
May God bless you with anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may work for justice, freedom, and peace.
May God bless you with tears to shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation, and war, so that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and to turn their pain into joy.
And may God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in this world, so that you can do what others claim cannot be done.
And the blessing of God Almighty, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, be upon you and remain with you forever.