“Be a nuisance where it counts. Do your part to inform and stimulate the public to join your action. Be depressed, discouraged, and disappointed at failure and the disheartening effects of ignorance, greed, corruption, and bad politics—but never give up.”
– Marjorie Stoneman Douglas
I once had an infestation of ants in my home. They congregated in my kitchen, skittering across the countertop as I chased them down. I tried nontoxic deterrents, alternating between vinegar and peppermint oil. As I battled the nuisance ants, my kitchen smelled like a cross between a pickle and a breath mint.
Jesus was a nuisance. He pestered and annoyed the people in power, exposing their corruption and cruelty, shaming them for their greed and bad politics. He championed the poor and oppressed, emphasizing their innate value and their human rights. He never gave up, even when it led to his murder.
It’s easy for us to use our politeness and aversion to conflict to not be a nuisance. But in a world aching for justice, this is the time to be a nuisance, the time to face what’s wrong in this world and take bold action to make it right.
God of Justice, help me to be a nuisance, embracing Jesus’ example to further the cause of justice in this unjust world. Amen.