11/22/15 Rev. David McArthur
Flowers Protect Us
For several days recently I was out of touch with the world, didn’t even have wi-fi! When I got back I learned about the Paris bombings. The news kept focusing on command and control; the focus was on fear. I felt that I was alone. When I feel that way I pray, “Please help me see what is going on here.”
As an answer, I saw that video clip where Parisians laid flowers and lit candles, and a little boy talked about the terrorists. “Those people are really bad. They’re so mean. Daddy, we have to move.” Beside him, his father said, “No. France is our home. There are bad people everywhere.” The boy: “They are so mean and they have guns!” “But,” his father replied, “we have flowers”—a beautiful response of compassion and love by so many. The flowers and candles were brought to heal. “Will the flowers protect us?” the boy asked his father. “Yes!” his father said. Millions and millions of people have gone to that video. They understand that’s what heals us. That’s the ONLY answer—not bigger guns. What heals us is when we reach out to that greater consciousness of connection.
I had waited in the Albuquerque airport for my flight home. I saw a young woman dressed like a Muslim. She walked with such confidence and centeredness in a time when the world was being judgmental and critical and all such people are feeling blamed. My heart was opened by this young woman. Peace was the way of her. It triggered lots of feelings of how women are treated in the Muslim world. Then I remembered one smart man at the Conference of World Religions last month saying it has nothing to do with “Muslim”, that everywhere there is a militaristic patriarchal society they must suppress the feeling, feminine part. It came to me, then, what will end all this need to command and control others—GIRLS READING BOOKS!
And I recalled Mahatma Gandhi, who said, “When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it–always.” They ALWAYS fall. Flowers are ALWAYS more powerful than guns.
At holiday time families come together. We return to relationships where we have judgments we have practiced for many years. But it is our chance to heal, to feel the gratitude that they cared enough to show up and give us the chance to bring a flower. We are at a time when the question is no longer “Will we make it?” We will—there are so many millions and millions of people who go to their hearts, go to compassion. The news won’t tell us about it much, but it is there. At this time join with me. The people of Paris, when they gave flowers, gave them to all of us throughout the world. They care. Send them that beautiful thought. Thank you for caring! What a beautiful thought to send the world! Thank you for caring! Give that Thanksgiving to the world, to all those beautiful beings! Thank you for caring! Truth and love ALWAYS, ALWAYS wins!