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Faith of A Mustard Seed

by Barbara Woods-Washington

Barbara A. Woods Washington, M. Div.

In his work “Deep Is The Hunger”, Dr. Howard Thurman writes this: “There is a strange irony in the usual salutation, “Merry Christmas, when most of the people on this planet are thrown back upon themselves for food which they do not possess, for resources that have long since been exhausted, and for vitality which has already run it’s course.  Nevertheless, the inescapable fact remains that Christmas symbolizes hope even at a moment when hope seems utterly fantastic.

The raw materials of the Christmas mood are newborn baby, a family, friendly animals, and labor.  An endless process of births is the perpetual answer of life to the fact of death.  It says that life keeps coming on, keeps seeking to fulfill itself, keeps affirming the margin of hope in the presence of desolation, pestilence and despair.  It is not an accident that the birth rate seems always to increase during times of war, when the formal processes of man are engaged in the destruction of others.  Welling up out of the depths of vast vitality, there is something at work that is more authentic than the formal discursive design of the human mind.  As long as this true ultimately, despair for the human race is groundless.”

The ‘Mood of Christmas’ seems to be more and more difficult to catch as the years go by.  What with ‘death going down’ and walking to and fro this year knocking on so many doors.  Death that no longer forces the COVID assumption, but as shocking as young children who have no hope; killing AND taking their own lives… forcing Mama to try to find a way to live with broken hearts that cannot be mended.  What?  With this ‘second calendar year’ of political control of a Pandemic Crisis; as well as life with a ‘cyber-spaced’ out church… it appears to no longer be a ‘where is God?’, but, a ‘who is God?’; in the midst of this chaotic man made reconstruction of life and culture as we will never know again.  Until… a 72 degrees —2 am —mid December 2021 night —Tornado/Cyclone claims 100+ lives in Kentucky —this Christmas!  Who… BUT GOD?!?!

I have always collected Christmas Music adding at least two new releases each year.  This year, ‘in the presence of desolation, pestilence and despair’, Roberta Flack has ‘the margin of hope’ in her pen— ‘There’s Still My Joy’ which simply says:  “I brought my tree, down to the shore;  The garland and the silver star;  To find my peace, grieve no more;  To heal this place inside my heart.  On every branch I laid some bread;  And hungry birds filled up the sky;  They rang like bells around my head;  They sang my spirit back to life.  One tiny child can change the world;  One shining light can show the way;  Through all my tears for what I’ve lost;  There’s still my joy, There’s still my joy;  For Christmas Day.  The snow comes down, on empty sand;  There’s tinsel moonlight on the wave;  My soul was lost but here I am;  So this must be amazing grace.  One tiny child can change the world;  One shining light can show the way;  Through all my tears for what I’ve lost;  There’s still my joy, There’s still my joy;  For Christmas Day.  There’s still my joy;  For Christmas Day.”

“There is something at work that is more authentic than the formal discursive design of the human mind.”  One tiny child can change the world;  One shining light can show the way;  Through all my tears for what I’ve lost;  There’s still my joy, There’s still my joy;  For Christmas Day.  There’s still my joy;  For Christmas Day.

by email: myfathersmansionpress@gmail.com

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