And I am at peace!
Something happened while at my Mom and Dad's that was affirming and for me a blending of our paths. Theirs is a Christian home; the kind of home I was raised in; where Jesus of Nazareth reigns King of all! This Jesus who never wanted to be King, but who wanted to eat, drink and sit with the marginalized, the poor, the disenfranchised, and those never invited into the homes and temples because of their "station" in life.
But that is not what I want to talk about here. Or is it?
You see, I come from a very large family (5 siblings) and I was the only one there with mom and dad for Thanksgiving. Dad sat the dining room table that had 4 place settings for "decoration" and yet dad did not remove the 4th place setting, and added a napkin. He laughed when I pointed it out to him!
But now, let me tell you, this is no surprise to my parents. I am the spokeswoman for these issues; I was the social worker for 33 years, I am the tree-hugging token hippie in this family of origin of mine. But what i said next was a surprise to them!
You see, as I said, this is a Christian home and I was invited into it even tho' I am their daughter. And I too was once on this Path and still honor it as one of the many Paths to the Divine!
So, I said, "This is a place setting for Jesus! This Jesus who embodies all that I just spoke of! Whose message was loud and clear as to where our priorities should be."
Yes, this empty place setting was not empty at our Table this Thanksgiving. This place setting was full of all that our society looks upon as unworthy, lazy and draining on our society. This place setting was full of all the love my parents give to their family and also to so many who are needy, hungry and homeless. They are good stewards to those in need; always have been and always will be.
So, there at the empty place setting I saw Goddess and they saw God! Crying out for us to get our priorities right. For me, not because this Jesus is coming back and will be in judgement but because it is part of our Creation to Do No Harm and to Do what ever needs to be done for the Neighbor!
When Jesus was asked which commandment was the most important the Bible says this:
In Matthew 22:37-40 Our Lord is asked by a lawyer “which is the great commandment in the law?” Jesus says this…”You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself’
And so the Pagan and the Christians sat together at the Thanksgiving Table embodying this text from the New Testament Christian Bible. We all love the Divine with all our hearts and we all love our Neighbor!
I hope this will be a new tradition!
And when I told my mom this she said, "Well unless we are at someone else's home for Thanksgiving/Christmas." My response: "Well, what a wonderful teachable moment it will be."
May you always have a place setting both at your table and in your heart for the Divine and for the Neighbor!