Monday, February 29, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Seventeen

Jesus teaches a simple truth -- You can not serve both God and money.  (Luke 16: 13)
(Video posted by Exposures Program about Camp Zero Tolerance in Whiteclay)

Christ, thank you for the prophets.  Even when maligned and ostracized, they continue to advocate for the innocent and vulnerable.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Sixteen

Jesus responds to complaints that he associates with sinners by telling the parables of the lost sheep, coin, and son.  (Luke 15)
(Another video posted by OYATE)

Christ, you are the Good Shepherd.  Your sheep hear your voice and follow you.  May we be wise leaders of the next generation, leading by example and showing them what it means to recognize you and to serve others as inspired by you.

Friday, February 26, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Fifteen

Jesus warns those following him to Jerusalem of discipleship's cost (Luke 14: 25-35)
(Clip from Buffalo Nation: the children are crying) 

Christ, wipe away every tear from their eyes.  Let death be no more.  Neither mourning nor crying nor pain, for the old order of things has passed away

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Fourteen

Jesus tells the parable of the Great Banquet.  The invited guests decline to come, so instead the poor and the outcast are welcomed to the party.  (Luke 14: 23, 24)
(Video created by the Mitakupi Foundation about the teen suicide crisis on Pine Ridge)

Christ, our hearts break for the young people who feel there is nothing for them -- no future, no hope, no options.  You who broke free of the grave, show them the path that leads to life.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Thirteen

Jesus' enemies threaten that Herod is after him.  Jesus doesn't fall for their trick; he continues the journey even knowing that traditionally, prophets are killed in Jerusalem.  (Luke 13: 31-35)
(Second clip from the video Pine Ridge: Beauty and Despair)

Christ, transform the power of shame and turn it into the power to speak up for ourselves and others.

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Twelve

Jesus heals a woman who had been bent over.  His detractors complain because he healed on the Sabbath.  (Luke 13: 10-17)
(Clip from "Pine Ridge: Beauty and Despair" produced by The Strong Heart Preservation Movement)

Christ, our leaders don't know what to do.  We don't know what to do.  Help us find the solutions to the problems that plague us.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Eleven

Jesus encourages his disciples to act on their knowledge.  They know the ethical choice is to put the needs of others ahead of their own desires; now they must live out their lives in a manner consistent with that knowledge.  (Luke 12: 41-59)

Christ of the Sacred Heart, you offer us wholeness, wholesomeness, fullness of life.  Help us to reject anything less.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Ten

Jesus instructs his disciples to give generously.  God has generously given to them, so they should generously give to others.  (Luke 12: 22-40)
(Main street of Whiteclay, Nebraska)

Christ, so much misery walks this street.  So many have died on this street.  So few seek to walk as you walk as they go down this street.  Clean up this street, we beg you.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Nine

Jesus warns his disciples to beware of the corrupting influence of greed.  (Luke 12: 15)
(Excerpt from the movie "The Battle for Whiteclay")

Christ, protect us from dishonorable merchants who put their profits ahead of people and the community.  Change their hearts.  Convict them of their sin.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Eight

Jesus exposes the corruption of the supposedly pious.  In response, they plot against him.
(Luke 11: 37-54)
(Greg Dobbs describes the crisis in Whiteclay for the World Report show)

Christ, for the alcoholic, we pray for deliverance.  For their victims, we pray for safety.  For their suppliers, we pray for justice.  Not our will, but your will be done.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Seven

Jesus defends his ministry after critics malign him.  (Luke 11: 14-36)
(Interview with Mark Vasina, director of "The Battle for Whiteclay")

Christ, thank you for those who use their gifts and talents to help others.  As empowered by your grace, we will extend ourselves to others and put our abilities into service for them.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Six

Jesus teaches his disciples how to pray and ask for what they need (Luke 11: 1-13)
(Interview with Frank LaMere about the documentary "The Battle for Whiteclay")

Christ, thank you for the prophets among us who speak out against injustice.  Grant us the courage to join our voices with theirs.

Monday, February 15, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Five

Jesus gently rebukes Martha over her mixed-up priorities.  (Luke 10: 38-42)
(Video of protesters confronting county sheriff)

Christ, guide us as we hold those in power accountable to the community.  Give our leaders insight into what troubles us and creative solutions to the problems.

Saturday, February 13, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Four

Jesus tells the story of the Good Samaritan to define what it means to love the neighbor
(Luke 10:25-37)
(Part II of video made by Creighton High School students)

Christ, inspire us to follow you into impossible odds and live out your truth there.  Your Spirit of hope gives us strength.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Three

Jesus rebukes the towns that close their doors to him (Luke 10:13-16)
(Part I of a video created by students at Creighton Prep High School, Omaha, NE.)

Christ, you chose not to blunt the pain of your crucifixion.  Unlike you, we have many ways of numbing ourselves and avoiding disturbance.  Cut off our escape path if it causes us more harm than good.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day Two

Luke 9: 52-62 -- Travel stories along the way to Jerusalem.  No one takes in the travelers.  No one shows them hospitality.
(John Maisch shares what motivated him to make the film, "Sober Indian, Dangerous Indian.")

Christ, you did everything you could to save us.  As your followers, what can we do to help the stranger experience fullness of life?

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Lenten Devotion: Day One

For me, the season of Lent begins with the story of Jesus setting his face toward Jerusalem (Luke 9:51).  He did not look away from the cross that awaited him.  He did not veer from a path lined with suffering and death.  

This Lenten season, I am looking at the pain experienced by the residents of the Pine Ridge Reservation, and I am searching for signs of victory over the death grip that keeps them conquered, defeated, and discarded.

Frank LaMere wrote the reflection and narrates the video that is posted above.  Mr. LaMere is a member of the Winnebago Tribe of Nebraska and a staunch advocate for justice in Whiteclay.

Christ, thank you for joining us in our suffering.  Give us the courage to follow you into places of sorrow as well as the wisdom to know what must be done to bring about healing.