I just read the President's speech on Iraq.
I didn't get to listen to it last night, because I was busy trying to find a ways to work on my mission experience in the Gulf. Anyone who's talked to me lately, or read this blog lately, knows that I have been struggling with some of the challenges of disaster work and community living. That means I've e been seeking consult and advice from some loving mentors and praying a whole lot.
Last night while the President was speaking, I was attending a prayer meeting. We prayed for our pastor, we prayed for the Presbytery of MS Disaster Recovery, we prayed for each other's families, for sick friends, for our world leaders and elected officials, for troops, and peace.
Today I read the President's speech.
Maybe I should have prayed harder last night.
I'm a peace girl- always will be. I don't begin to understand the complexity of the situation we're in with the whole Iraq mess. I am glad I'm not in charge of solving matters over there. But I wonder if we're taking the right course of action, if peace is our desired outcome. I wonder how increasing troops makes for a swifter end to this conflict. I wonder how we're going to pay for this increase in presence. I wonder why we're spending precious resources abroad when our own citizens are in such great need. I wonder why we're going to strip more American families apart to send more troops to war. And I keep coming back to these three things:
1. God asks us to love one another.
2. Our own people are hurting. I live in Mississippi- a poor, broken state right under the President's nose. Before the hurricane hit, people here were poor and broken. They couldn't afford health care, food, fair housing. Why weren't we taking better care of our own? Then a huge storm hits and in the months and years that follow, we're hindered in helping them recover because so many of our resources are being spent overseas. People here are still living in MOLD! And that's just Mississippi- what about the health care and education needs across the country (Baltimore, anyone?), what about poverty in our cities, what about the violence and drugs our streets?
3. My brother-in-law is in Baghdad right now. His family at home misses him and needs him. But his country asked him to go over there and do what he can to ensure stability in the chaos, and safety for his family at home. He went- gladly. He believes that he is making the world a better place, and that he is serving God's mission in trying to bring stability and peace to his neighbors. He might be right. His explanation, carefully penned and mailed to me along with a photo of him in a big Saddam chair in Baghdad, rocks every bit of my liberal argument, especially being so personal.
So I get back to the conclusion that I don't have any answers here.
I'm curious about what you think......
I guess I need to go pray some more. We all do.