PSALM OF GOOD AND EVIL
It's some time ago now, but it was a bishop who had died. There was a story that he had died from cancer, and that he had known he was terminally ill for about six months or more. He preached his last sermon, including the phrase "God is in the cancer..." or something like it (I have probably altered it to fit a "psalm"). I can't remember now where the phrase about good and evil being like "mating dogs" comes from; is it a Chinese proverb? In any case, this time of year (in the northern hemisphere, anyway) is a good time to ponder the closeness of good things, even when it may seem we are surrounded by bad. Have a happy month of May!
- "God is in the cancer just as in the sunset
you are to be met and responded to in each."
- Is it shocking to say such a thing
are you in the evil as well as the good?
- A Japanese man had come to my home
but he had been fighting my country in war -
- he thought he'd been doing the will of his gods
was it only when he repented that you could love him?
- The hard-working prison visitor reflected goodness
but he had been a criminal, violent and uncaring -
- did you not love him then
was it only when he'd been converted that you were with him?
- We are faced with the problem of good
it's easy to spurn what is bad, but am I then rejecting the good?
- Can the terrorist be treated as rotten, the scum of the earth
even prisoners of war have rights;
- she may only be fighting for her human rights
he may regard himself as a freedom fighter?
- Good and evil are like mating dogs
your purposes are working through both of them,
- for you said, "I create the good; I create evil also"
both happiness and sorrow are surrounded by your presence,
- you can be in those who do what I call evil
you are in us all and you are greater than all.