Friday, 23 January 2009

Which wolf do you feed? The first sermon preached for President Obama

There is a story attributed to Cherokee wisdom:
One evening a grandfather was teaching his young grandson about the internal battle that each person faces.
"There are two wolves struggling inside each of us" the old man said.
"One wolf is vengefulness, anger, resentment, selfpity, fear ...
"The other wolf is compassion, faithfulness, hope, truth, love ..."
The grandson sat thinking,then asked: "Which wolf wins grandfather?
His grandfather replied "The one you feed."

I read this today in Rev Sharon Watkins sermon for the first prayer service attended by President Obama following his taking the oath of office.
I began to wonder about which wolf I am feeding. We set standards so high for our politicians and leaders, and while we expect so much of those in high office we so easily excuse ourselves our ethical lapses.

It's been an emotional week watching Obama come to power. I appreciate the thoughtfull seriousness. None of the grating false humility and false (in)sincerity of Tony Blair in 1997 - the man who took his country to war because he "believed" it was right. Hmm.
Let's hope this US president will not feel he has to choose to feed the wolf of war.

Read the rest of Sharon Watkins sermon here.