It is Sunday morning and my black arse needs to be in somebody’s church, but I am busy searching for a new car for my Mama. I thought I would take a break and tell you what’s on my heart. Today is the Sabbath, the Lord’s Day. While some of y’all are where you should be “rejoicing and being glad,” my soul is restless. In times like these, we need a savior. I’m afraid it isn’t Barack Obama. I fall back on what I learned at the feet of my grandmother. In Alice Walker’s The Color Purple, there is a powerful scene with Shug Avery and Celie in the juke joint on a Sunday morning. Shug is singing and the sound of gospel comes wafting down from the church. It sweeps everybody in the club up in the spirit. Instantly, Shug stops and starts singing and marching her way toward the church:
Speak, Lord. Won’t you speak to me?
I was so blind, I was so lost until you spoke to me
Oh, speak, Lord. Speak, Lord. And hear my mind,
Oh, with your word, heal my soul
Oh, speak, Lord. Speak to me. Speak, my Lord.
I love you, Lord. Save my soul.
Can’t sleep at night and you wonder why
Maybe God is trying to tell you something
Crying all night long, something’s gone wrong
Maybe God is trying to tell you something.
I don’t know where we’d be as people without The Black Church. The cultural heritage and spiritual power of that institution has sustained us since the beginning. I don’t know about you, but I can never stray too far. As far as I am concerned, everything that is good and true has its genesis there.
It occurs to me that we need the Lord to speak to us this morning. When he speaks, hopefully we will be able to discern what he says. What I am hearing is that instead of putting all our trust in President Obama and worshiping at the altar of corporate Neoliberalism, we need to put our trust in the Lord and pray that the president hears the Lord’s still, small voice. We’ve come this far by faith, people. Trusting in his Holy Word. And he’s never failed us yet. When the President announces to the world that he is ready to throw the moneychangers out of the temple, stops indefinite detention, prosecutes torturers, withdraws from Afghanistan and Iraq, and embraces health care as a right for all, then we’ll know that he has heard the Lord and been convicted by the spirit because he did what was right.