Saturday, February 4, 2017

Sunday Remoodling: Old Turtle and the Broken Truth

I was recently reminded of this moodling from two years ago because of all my present moodling (musing and doodling) about truth during these days of "alternative facts." I think it deserves to be revisited:

December 2014 -- This week I paid a visit to my local library. It's been a few years since our family's weekly routine of hauling home a bag filled with children's books went by the wayside due to the onset of adolescence, but I'm still a sucker for great children's picture books! I brought one home called Old Turtle and the Broken Truth (2003, Scholastic, ISBN 0-439-32109-3), written by Douglas Wood, and illustrated with beautiful water colour images by Jon J. Muth (I'm a sucker for water colour art, too!) 

Old Turtle is a beautiful story about a truth (like a meteorite) shooting through the sky and breaking up before it hits the earth. Animals find the truth, but realize that it is too sharp, with a piece missing that prevents it from "working properly." Then people find it, and declare it to be the most beautiful truth ever, enshrining it in a special place and fighting to keep it from others, causing all sorts of bloodshed, hatred, anguish and pain.

But a young girl with an open heart and mind goes to talk to grandmotherly Old Turtle, who gives the girl the missing piece of the truth. Gratefully receiving it, the girl takes it back to her people, who discover that the two pieces fit together perfectly, revealing the whole truth: "You are loved / and so are they." Discovering the whole truth, the people begin to be able to look at others... and see themselves, too.

Since reading the book, which I recommend to anyone with children, and even to adults(!), I've been reflecting on places where love of the 'other' has gone missing -- in relationships between nations and races, in our abuse of creation, in our refusal to accept difference.

I am realizing how much God is needed in our world in the form of justice, mercy, peace, and love. There are so many places where the darkness is calling out for light. So, we can't just sit on our hands while we wait -- we need to let our hands be God's hands, our words be God's words, our actions be God's actions in love, peace, mercy and justice.

Come, O God,
light our darkness,
heal our lovelessness,
make us into your justice
and thus,
bring us peace.
Let us always remember that,
as we are loved,
so are all the others you have created.

+AMEN.

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