Today I chose to fast from food and I am starting to feel hunger pangs. This empty feeling inside me is a longing. A physical longing for food, yes, but also a longing for justice.
I am joining with other pastors for a three day protest fast in the state of Indiana because we allow children in our cities to go to bed hungry at night. The problem is not a lack of food. The problem is a lack of will. We could feed the world if we wanted to and still have leftovers.
Today I attended a lecture at Christian Theological Seminary about Black Theology and James Cone. We discussed Cone’s first book, Black Theology and Black Power and then his later work, God of the Oppressed. I feel grateful for the hope in Cone’s words about God’s determination to not ever, not ever, let us go.
Cone reminds us that oppression impacts all of us, and liberating the oppressed liberates the oppressor.
When we use our collective will to end oppression, to end hunger, we will all be truly fulfilled and free.
Being hungry today while sitting in the James Cone lecture reminded me of my time as an undergrad studying abroad in Glasgow, Scotland, when I had very little money. Near campus, I found a Christian outreach center that sold homemade soups and hot tea for a low cost.
A few years later, I returned to Glasgow, Scotland for an internship during seminary and served as a student pastor for a Church of Scotland day center for people who are homeless. Together we ate homemade soup and drank hot tea.
As I look toward tomorrow and beginning day two of the Pastor’s Protest Fast, I am thankful the words of James Cone will be my nourishment.
To help end hunger connect with Bread for the World: https://bread.org/