Give the king your justice, O God,
and your righteousness to a king’s son
May he judge your people with righteousness,
and your poor with justice.
— Psalm 72:1-2
For whatever was written in former days was written for our instruction, so that by steadfastness and by the encouragement of the scriptures we might have hope.
— Romans 15:4
At two minutes before midnight on Monday, October 31, 2011 at a hospital in the Phillipines, Danica May Comacho came into the world at 5 pounds 8 ounces and was laid in a crib with a sign which read, baby 7B. Amid the millions of births and deaths around the world each day, it is impossible to pinpoint the arrival of the globe’s 7 billionth occupant, and so the designation of little Danica as baby 7 billion is more symbolism than it is a fact provable to all. Still, according the the experts whether it was Danica or some other child born, there are now seven billion people who walk this planet with us. It is a beyond comprehension to think about so many people in so many places.
As I have thought about that idea of seven billion people and the life little Danica may know, I have found myself wondering what my life might have been like had I been born in a different place and to different parents. I look back and think how much of what I know to be true about life grows naturally from having been born at Fort Belvoir, Virginia to Bill and Charlene Greener. I have never known anything but the love of parents who provided everything. I have only known the peace and freedom of this land. I have only known opportunity and possibility. But, what if I had been born to the Camancho’s in the Phillipines? What if I had been born to a family in Guatemala? What if I had been born to a family, desperate to find their way to freedom and opportunity?
The plaintive plea of the Psalmist rings “may the mountains yield prosperity for the people.” The very earth cries out for justice for all people, for a chance, for a means by which we all may know the possibility of life: hope, peace, joy, love. This season of Advent is our chance to give voice to our deepest longings, to our soul’s desire for a world in which all will know their truth worth.
Prayer: Lord of life, our world still lays in sin and sorrow, awaiting the full realization of your incarnation. May we see ourselves in the eyes of every child, may we hear cry with every crying baby, may we hunger with every hungry child, for you call to us in the needs of our world. Amen.
— Tom Greener