“Justice is what love looks like in public.” – Cornel West

by Dawn Noelle

standing-rock-1Let me take a moment to say how thankful I am for all of you who love and support this passionate mother who has some very particular ideas about what God has called me to be as an expression of unconditional, sacrificial love for my fellow human beings as image bearers of God.

This morning I read in 2 Thessalonians 3:5 “May the Lord lead your hearts into a full understanding and expression of the love of God and the patient endurance that comes from Christ.”

These words are helpful to me in expressing my reasons for traveling to North Dakota to visit the Oceti Sakowin camp, just outside the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation where the Dakota Sioux tribe, and their many supporters, are standing in opposition to the Dakota Access Pipeline that is to be routed under the Missouri River and through their sacred burial grounds.

standing-rockIt was probably close to a year ago when I first signed a petition in support of the Dakota youth who were running across America to raise awareness about the Dakota Access Pipeline. But in recent months, what is going on in Standing Rock has gained more media attention. When I first felt the tug at my heart to go, I mostly dismissed it as it didn’t seem very feasible. But then two friends here at Church of the Sojourners, Nate Pequette and Jody Beavers and I began praying. God seems to have moved all the pieces into place, having raised over $1000 in a very short amount of time, to go together and humbly offer help and supplies or whatever is needed, to join in the 24 hours/day prayers taking place on site for all involved, and very particularly to glean from the spirit of peaceful protest and prayer something that may be applied to our own particular struggles against the injustices that are happening here in our own San Francisco neighborhood.

I would ask for your prayers for safety, sensitivity to God’s leading, and for a faithful testimony of God’s heart for the creation and the created to shine. We leave this afternoon and will begin our journey home at the end of the week as God leads.

Photo Credit: United Church of Christ via 2.0 Flicker