Tools On Hand

Leaf blowers are an instrument of the devil. / They snarl from across the street
while you were trying to sleep / and pollute the air with dust and gas
and pointlessly blow leaves around / for the next gusto bring right back
where they started. Good people / use a rake or a broom, as God intended.
I knew this, clear as day, until / the dads showed up at the protest,
joined the wall of moms with fists upraised, / singing hands up, don’t shoot
in tones that could comfort a baby. / The dads brought hockey sticks
to bat away the canisters of tear gas. / And leaf blowers to disperse the gas
back whence it came
I don’t trust anyone / who tells me what God intends.
Nonetheless, I will tell you this: / God means for us to use
the tools we have on hand / to protect what is threatened and growing.

         —“Leaf Blowers” by Lynn Ungar

Many times lately, I have struggled with all the things that are clearly far out of my control. I like to plan. I like to have a sense of where and how things are moving. I like to visit Clivie’s classroom before the first day of school. But this is not where we are, moving into August 2020. And yet, still, there are grace and justice-filled opportunities budding out all around us. I may not be in control (as if I ever was!), but we still have tools on hand that God means for us to use to make a positive difference in this world. What are some of those tools you have on hand? Leaf blowers (who would have thought?), masks, our free little pantry, vegetable seeds, flowers, a hand written letter, homemade bread, a protest sign, a phone call. . . .  Yes, there is much that we do not know or have control over. But God is still leading and guiding and giving us courage. So, let’s pick up our tools and go to work.

See you in (zoom) church,