“They will neither harm nor destroy on all my holy mountain, for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.” Isaiah 11:9 (NIV)
“I think tonight is the New Moon. No night more peaceful; no bloodshed in all the city.” Marion, Wings of Desire
Tonight is the last new moon of the year and it is a gentle day on the calendar brought by a story far from gentle….a young woman who refuses marriage and uses her dowry to give to the poor. For this her eyes are torn out, though her sight is restored. When her captors try to burn her, no harm will come to her and eventually she is stabbed in the throat to bring about her death. Her decision has cost her life, but in legend and prayers, in heaven and in the thoughts of those on earth, she lives and continues her aid to the poor.
It is Lucy’s Day. I write this with the first hints of light breaking over Chicago and thinking how nice it would be if the city could have one day of peace, especially a day when at Daley Plaza and in Andersonville, children will be holding candles and people will be sharing sweets as food is collected for the poor.
It is Lucy’s Day, a day for children and gentle things. And it is Advent, a time to remember the poor and to pray that our cities may be like the holy mountain. It is a time to wake up to our decisions, even if we are unsure of destiny, to be on the side of peace and the poor and to join hands with those who honor such things by practicing kindness.
The world will certainly give us enough opportunity to be elsewhere at other times, but tonight it would be nice if the new moon could shine over Daley Plaza as it does over the Volker Plaza in a city without violence and to have one night where no one would unnecessarily die or to have a day with no hunger. And not just Chicago, but every city everywhere….elevated to the status of holy mountain knowing true righteousness, true kindness, and true peace.