On Saturday, January 21st, women (and men) across the country will march in solidarity. To quote the mission and vision for The Women’s March on Washington:
We stand together in solidarity with our partners and children for the protection of our rights, our safety, our health, and our families – recognizing that our vibrant and diverse communities are the strength of our country.
It’s been a while since I felt called to take to the streets as an act of protest and unity for a cause. At this moment in history and herstory the list of causes are vast and multi-layered. The complexity of the here and now is often overwhelming. I am reminded of those who came before us…those who used their discernment, creativity, voices, and fierce passion to facilitate change. Again, the call has sounded and there are many ways to respond.
I will take part in the Women’s March in Dallas with my friend, Karen Blessen. Karen is an artist, visionary, and she recently won the Dallas Peace and Justice Center’s Peacemaker of the Year award. I mention Karen’s work and accomplishments as one of many ways to work for peace and justice. Karen and her associates at 29 Pieces teach love, compassion, non-violence, and respect to children through the co-creation of art and beauty. We are living in a critical time that invites each of us to contemplate creative ways to collectively and individually explore, express, and imagine the facilitation of peace and positive change.
Not all of us can march on Saturday. Perhaps your city hasn’t planned a local march. For some of us there are health issues, work schedules, family responsibilities, and other reasons that prevent participation at a march. Though not all women feel called to demonstrate in this way, there may be a particular longing to express solidarity on this important day of national focus.
The following invitations I’m offering may seem simplistic, but I feel that each gesture, creative expression, prayer, act of service and outreach, when made with compassion, intention and love, creates an energy field that radiates for the greater good. No loving and thoughtful response is too small at this moment in time.
- Journal your feelings. Put pen to paper: Today as the world turns, I am feeling……and I feel called to…..
- Pray. Light a candle and offer prayers for all those who are marching on Saturday, and for all those working tirelessly for peace on behalf of our suffering world.
- Make a collage as a visual prayer. Choose images from magazines that represent your vision for healing our earth and her people. The creation of beauty is a saving grace and a sacramental act when done with intention and prayer.
- Contemplate if there is a situation in your life where forgiveness is called for and discern your appropriate response. Healing our world begins with the healing of personal relationships.
- Email or call your local governmental representatives and express your concerns. Each voice is an act of unity with all who are working for change.
- Take a walk in your neighborhood during the time of the Washington March (1:15 EST) as a gesture of solidarity. Exercise is a by-product of walking and a great stress reliever.
- Volunteer locally where your gifts and outreach can be of service, often there’s a need right around the corner.
- Call a circle of friends and share the afternoon doing one or more of the suggestions listed above.
- Add your own inspirations and ways to respond to this list and share your ideas with others.
- Take a deep breath and give thanks for all life’s blessings. Hug the one within reach. Love and then love some more.
The work doesn’t end after the march and a day of reflection. The work for social justice and positive, inclusive change is beginning a new chapter. I continue to discern how I will serve during this time of challenge, day by day. I look to the wisdom of the past to inform the present. Change for the highest good of all concerned has predominantly been facilitated through passionate creativity and thoughtful appropriate response.
Angels are among us and around us. They speak to us through our imaginations and our dreams. They invite us to keep our hearts open, our minds awake, and our creative spirits responsive.
Onward we go as the world turns….