At this time of year, we think of babies, particularly the baby Jesus. The terrorist shooting four years ago in San Bernardino reminds us that we bring babies into the world where evil happens. I am thinking of the baby girl left behind by her parents and how we ourselves were left hurt and fearful of the future. This child was a baby born and almost immediately rejected by her parents.
My sons were born in the 60s which was during a time of great civil unrest because of racial discrimination. I remember clearly the news stories each night of Americans fighting in the streets. As a young mother, I feared for my babies and wondered what kind of world I was bringing them into. I looked for hope for my children.
We remember Mary, the young woman about to give birth. In a short time she would give birth and then she and Joseph would be forced to flee into Egypt for safety from an evil ruler who sought to kill the baby. This young mother hoped her son could be spared to fulfill the promise made to her by the angel Gabriel.
Babies have always been born into a world with its human evils, with discriminations, and with rejections.
It will always be so. But it is up to each of us to live in hope, to give hope to others, and to be blessed by the birth of the baby who we celebrate this Advent season, the Hope of Christ.
Will you do your part? There are some things we cannot change, and we are not responsible for. But there are things we can do and things we can change. We can change how Christians deny women full equality. We can do that. We can make it a better world for girls, mothers and daughters.
Will you give hope to women who daily face the discrimination that is birthed in churches, denying them full honor and responsibility of serving Christ as pastors and deacons, and from full equality in their own homes.