“For the Lord will comfort Zion;
he will comfort all her waste places,
and will make her wilderness like Eden,
her desert like the garden of the Lord;
joy and gladness will be found in her,
thanksgiving and the voice of song.” – Isaiah 51:3
Your prophets told the people that Eden would be here. Your prophets foretold comfort and joy, gardens and gladness.
And upon arrival, only wastelands stand.
So where is this flowering land? Where is the spiritual destination foretold? Where is the sanctuary where soul and body are safe and nourished? They thought they had arrived…
And yet – only the raw wilderness remains.
Rather than a wilderness flourishing like Eden, this garden remains rocky. Its sandy soil erodes with each bigoted downpour.
The diaspora people in their new orchards struggle for the fruits to blossom while deep, infiltrating weeds of privilege sprout and strangle. The flowerbeds cannot abide in beauty while wayward shrubs obstruct the sun’s streams of healing and nurture.
We keep praying for comfort. Comfort the people. Comfort our neighbors. But the warm winds are blocked by the biting breeze of bigotry.
We ask again for their comfort. And, this time, we must ask for our complacency to end. We must work for our inertia to end.
Divine Cultivator, even when the winds are harsh and the weeds unruly, let us be willing to abide together in orchards. Let us be willing to sow together in new gardens, and may we be willing to uproot the crabgrass which overtakes healthy soil.
May Eden abide in the diaspora, and may we be willing to cultivate Eden with all your gardeners.
© 2018 Rev. Michelle L. Torigian. Permission is given to reproduce for worship or educational purposes.