She stopped by my office to tell me
that she had cried her way through my sermon.
I thought it had been a good sermon
hitting all the right spots for a Thanksgiving week
coming of Advent proclamation:
We lean into the Hope of Advent,
thankful for what we have
brutally honest about the realities that surround us.
That hopeful leaning
calls us to honestly address
and diligently work for
justice and mercy
in the living of our daily lives.
What had caused her tears?
"I can no longer stay silent about
the problems on my job."
The ignoring of patient care needs,
the understaffing that caused
wounds to go uncared for
and patients to be ignored
she lined out for me in detail.
"Help me find out who to report this to."
a doctor in her home country,
turning patients and carrying bedpans
in her adopted home,
that one less experienced might not see.
Putting livelihood on the line
she came to me.
I would find the numbers she needed to call.
Driving in to work
Jesus asked me,
"Which of these was more faithful to the Gospel,
the one who preached?
Or the one who lived in justice and mercy?"
"The one who lived the Gospel," I replied.
"Go thou and do likewise."