Of hope and healing and hullabaloo…..

I don’t much care for riding buses.
There was one year of my life when i rode one every day to school –
my peers and I bused,  with the 6th graders in my city,
to an historic old building in a crumbling part of town.
What I remember most was the bus ride.
Having only ever walked to school before,  it was an uneasy adventure.
I loved the sense of going the same somewhere as everybody else,
always having craved community and it came built in this way – we were a little tribe.
I liked that.

But there was the whole being driven thing.  Going along because I was going along.
I wanted to belong but I also wanted freedom
and felt much freer putting my feet to sidewalk and taking it all at my own pace and pleasure.

Often I joined in enthusiastic with the hullabaloo at the back of the bus,
loving the camaraderie,
but I hated  it when someone was cruel,
taunting passers-by or a more vulnerable rider.
(usually the older-looking boys disrespecting a slower-grower).
It felt oppressive then to be “us” but not really.

Since then I’ve avoided buses.
and, to my sadness,  much of our country seems more and more
to be filing crowded onto two of them.
There are dearly loved ones of mine embracing both sides,  those I hear and respect,
but when I step inside each I feel crimped tight for air
and the sound bruises my sky-loving heart.

I love my country and her people.
I hunger and pray for a world where no one turns a deaf ear to any being in distress.
The Horton in me hears the Who’s of us and I wear my sleeves rolled up
to help create a place where we’re all welcome and safe to be.
I’m pro voice.
Even as the disrespect being voiced on both buses rakes sharp across my senses
and injures something inside,  I love the voices still.
But much of the rhetoric being hurled scalds my tender,  listening parts
and I have to pull aside to hear the whispers above the roar.

It’s what I’m seeing  through the smoke that gives me hope,
that winds of healing are coming,
releasing healers who will step across party lines and release love into the fray.
Healers, budding now,  like a field of wildflowers getting ready to sing.
Those deeply wounded by racism,  by exclusion,  by rejection and indifference
and misogyny and injustice…….these will the healers be.
The ones who have felt wicked the pain are the ones who seem to carry the medicine
once life gets some healing done.

The healers are being made even by the judgement being hurled at them now.
From both buses they’ll come,  those who bring the balm that creates the change.
Not blinded to context or played by their pain,
with a billion different faces of the unseen authority they’ve gained
to go into crisis and confusion and bridge division and bring solution.

They’ll release truth and kindness in a way that holds weight and shifts invisible things,
won’t hold in contempt or make assumptions from across the aisles
but will listen unfiltered and draw up solution from deep wells of grace.

I’ll hold this hope gentle-strong as these next days unfold,
trusting that each unkind voice will become one that helps heal us someday.
To both buses and also to those of us that walk a little on the out,
may there come wild surprise by the grace outstretched from each side
to bring healing to We the People,
each of us becoming conduits of generosity and justice
in ways that we don’t yet even dare to see.

I believe our best days are out in front of us still,
that we won’t mock or condescend to get there.
Grace to you wherever you are,
exactly as you are.
With the whole of my you-loving heart:)

“You can safely assume you’ve created God in your own image
when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.”
– Anne Lamott


  1. Elephant's Child on January 24, 2017 at 9:40 pm

    Thank you.
    I so hope that the healers and the huritng can be heard. From where-ever they come.
    I quite like buses, rolling along, but cannot cope with boex and bars. Not the ones that people are put in, nor the ones I have to my shame squeezed myself into.

    • jennifer on January 28, 2017 at 10:34 am

      I believe the healers will be be heard and felt in the deep places
      where real change rumbles and rights things. Healing that happens unseen
      before it begins to manifest in circumstances where mostly we see and take notice.
      Kind of like the earthquake that causes the tidal waves….I think the earthquake is beginning
      to happen, quiet, but the effects won’t be seen for awhile. I hold this hope dear.
      Thanks for being such a good friend to me here in this space, Sue. I appreciate you soooooo big:)

  2. judy Hartman on January 24, 2017 at 11:51 pm

    I do hope that healing will come, Jennifer, because I feel the dissension in my gut and it is doing a job on me. I am, quite honestly, praying as I have never prayed before, for our country and its people. I love your words and the hope they bring.

    • jennifer on January 28, 2017 at 10:29 am

      For me it’s not so much the words themselves, although some of them are just poisonous,
      but it’s the spirit of the words that seems to land such blows. I welcome dissension when it’s done
      well. With respect. There seems unleashed, through so many, a spirit of accusation that is so destructive that
      it ends conversation rather than encouraging or even permitting it. I think the conversation is key.
      I so hear you and appreciate that you’re praying too. Our country and her people – so worth fighting for.
      Love to you and your beautiful praying heart,

  3. Lynn Wilkinson on January 25, 2017 at 3:50 am

    I do so long ve yourinspiratio…a healing balm to my troubled soul…I needed to hear, read, your gentle and loving insights and encouragement.
    I wish we could get together soon.

    • jennifer on January 28, 2017 at 10:24 am

      Hey Lynn…thanks for your kind words and big squeeze to your heart:) Love to you in the trouble,
      friend; know that my heart holds yours always with big hope and affection.
      Your value has no end:)

  4. Rebecca on January 25, 2017 at 8:19 am

    Thank you for these words that match the sandwich board sign inside my heart.

    • jennifer on January 28, 2017 at 10:21 am

      I’m so glad for your encouraging words, Rebecca. It feels good to hear that I’m not alone
      in my little sign I hold here in my heart:) Big hugs and thank you.

  5. jeanie on January 26, 2017 at 3:04 pm

    I hope the healing happens. I hope so. But I fear there will be far more hurting before the healing begins. That we will take the elevator shaft to the deepest basement, struggle to open the door and hope to find a leader who will guide us up, working together, floor by floor, waiting for the bruised and battered but moving forward in love and inclusion. Your words are so very beautiful. May we all seek hope.

    • jennifer on January 28, 2017 at 10:20 am

      It’s all such a mixed bag, isn’t it. I think I’d feel despair if I hoped for a leader who would lead guide us.
      My hope is in the leader in each of us as individuals, as citizens with voices and hearts and creative ingenuity who will seek and
      discover solution that is as unique and diverse as we are a people. Creativity trumps a singular voice every time, I think. A whole
      sea of creativity is what I’m sensing….kind of hear it rumbling in the deep. I do believe that healing is happening in ways we can’t yet
      Thanks for joining the conversation, Jeanie. I appreciate your voice in the earth!

  6. Barbara Shallue on January 27, 2017 at 11:21 pm

    You have such a beautiful way of stating truths. I love this analogy and I share your belief and hope that healers will appear.

    • jennifer on January 28, 2017 at 10:13 am

      Thanks, Barbara….your kind words are balm and light and I appreciate
      you more than I can say:)

  7. gotham girl on January 30, 2017 at 9:07 am

    I intentionally hold off reading your postings until your readers weigh in…because not only do your words touch my heart, but often many of them do as well. I couldn’t agree more with the comments from Jeanie above…I too think there’s going to be a lot more hurt before the tides turn. Hope…and you said it perfectly…”My hope is in the leader in each of us as individuals, as citizens with voices and hearts and creative ingenuity who will seek and discover solution that is as unique and diverse as we are a people.” Thank you.

    • jennifer on February 5, 2017 at 7:18 am

      I’m glad you dropped by for a read, Robin; thanks for sharing your heart
      over here. Grateful for your muchness:)

  8. Susan on January 30, 2017 at 10:17 pm

    My listening parts are feeling pretty beat up but I will keep trying to hear the whispers and will always be blessed by the goodness that is you … I cherish having you close by with your soft wisdom.

    • jennifer on February 5, 2017 at 7:16 am

      Love and healing balm to your beat up parts
      and much joy to you for the relishing, friend:)
      Big hug,

Leave a Comment