A place for thought.

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         “Our Sali makes the juice. We drink the juice. We live.” The fat, sweaty man looked up at me from his place on the ground. He smiled and nodded as he took another drink from the wooden, half filled cup he held in both of his brown hands. “You should drink, so you will not die,” he held the cup out to me, his smile showing his white teeth.

         “I do not need the juice to live,” I told him quietly and patiently for the third time.” He responded by placing the wooden cup on the ground and silently watched the milky white liquid make tiny ripples in the wooden cup.

         “Our Sali makes the juice. We drink the juice. We live,” he mumbled without looking away from the cup.

         “Your Sali makes the juice using four ingredients. One of the four ingredients gives you life. One of those ingredients does nothing. One of the four ingredients makes you very sick. The fourth ingredient is plain water.”

         “Our Sali makes”

         “Yes, I know, your Sali makes the juice! And the juice makes you very sick!” I looked for something to hit, finding nothing I kicked at the dirt hurting my foot in my frustration. “You are given life by the ingredient that does not make you sick,” I sat on the ground across from the fat man and looked into his quiet peaceful eyes. His complete confidence in his chosen path made him my friend. I smiled, put my two hands forward with palms upturned. He placed his hands palms down on top of mine. His eyes sparkled with joy. A tear left a trail on his cheek.

         “The juice gives us life. Life is an amazing thing.”

         I got to my feet and turned to leave. Looking back at the fat, sweaty man I said, “Be at peace.”



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Matthew 5:7

Blessed (happy, to be envied, and spiritually prosperous—with life-joy and satisfaction in God’s favor and salvation, regardless of their outward conditions) are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy!

Matthew 9:13

Go and learn what this means: I desire mercy [that is, readiness to help those in trouble] and not sacrifice and sacrificial victims.

Matthew 12:7

And if you had only known what this saying means, I desire mercy [readiness to help, to spare, to forgive] rather than sacrifice and sacrificial victims, you would not have condemned the guiltless.

Matthew 18:33

And should you not have had pity and mercy on your fellow attendant, as I had pity and mercy on you?

Matthew 23:23

Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, pretenders (hypocrites)! For you give a tenth of your mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected and omitted the weightier (more important) matters of the Law—right and justice and mercy and fidelity. These you ought [particularly] to have done, without neglecting the others.




Picture that moment in a film when the person lying in the hospital bed moves their eyelids and someone says, “doctor he moved, I think he’s coming out of the coma.” And the doctor responds, “after twenty years?”
All my life I have listened for those distant words: “doctor he moved.”

On the night my mother went to the hospital, in order to give birth to my youngest sister, all of us kids were rounded up and taken to my aunt’s house. From the floor of the TV room, in sleeping bags, we watched – for the first time: The Twilight Zone. The ugly girl turned out to be very pretty and the normal doctors and nurses were quite deformed. When I wake up I expect something like this.