Marches … from Argentina

The poem is by Gerardo Oberman of Argentina in translation by Katie Fiegenbaum and I pair it with a photograph that I took in Israel in a place that was called the wilderness of the temptation. But Gerardo’s point is that it is not “there” — it is inside. It is not for the first Sunday of Lent — it is the reflection all this season long, all our lives long.

(In light of Luke 4:1-13)

The process is inside,
it passes through mind and heart,
through feelings and conscience.
The way is not to a place,
near or far;
it is to the soul,
the space that, perhaps,
for some people has remained
tremendously distant
from their values, their principles,
from their choices and their actions.

The desert in which Jesus walks
in the time of his Lent,
is his own personal land.
It is the floor of his inner being
that lets him discover himself,
know himself,
be honest with himself,
heal himself,
free himself,
prepare himself
for the mission in his trust.

He does not march to a public plaza
to be noticed, so that all speak of him.
He does not march to the beat
of pressures put upon him by others;
nor does he walk confusedly
in a disoriented procession of puppets.

He does not enter the territory
of power that corrupts
nor play the game with those who,
knowing human weakness,
seek to tempt, seduce, deceive…

Jesus marches into a silence allowing him
to sort out his thoughts,
affirm his convictions,
recognize the lying voices
and construct responses founded
in the Word that leads to all truth,
that heads toward all justice,
and makes possible full peace.

From such a fertile silence,
Jesus leaves inspired to take part
in the great march of life,
embracing and healing the sad and hurt,
liberating and empowering the oppressed and beaten,
sharing and teaching all equally,
denouncing and exposing
the corrupt and the hypocrites,
signaling a new horizon
in which all things
will be exposed to the LIGHT.

In this time of our Lent,
may our march be to the silence
that lets us rediscover ourselves,
heal ourselves,
free ourselves,
embrace ourselves,
reengage ourselves
and walk in hope
toward a radical newness
heralded in Jesus.

Gerardo Oberman

(A la luz de Lucas 4:1-13)

El proceso es interior,
pasa por la mente y el corazón,
los sentimientos y las entrañas.
El camino no es hacia algún lugar,
cercano o lejano;
es hacia el alma,
ese espacio que, tal vez,
para algunas personas haya quedado
tremendamente distante
de sus valores, de sus principios,
de sus elecciones y de sus acciones.
El desierto al que camina Jesús
en el tiempo de su cuaresma,
es su propio terreno íntimo,
es el suelo de su interioridad
que le permite descubrirse,
a la misión que le es encomendada.
No marcha a una plaza pública para ser visto,
para ser noticia, para que todos hablen de él.
No marcha al ritmo
de las presiones intencionadas;
tampoco camina confundido
en una desorientada procesión de marionetas.
No se deja meter en el territorio
del poder que corrompe
ni le hace el juego a quien,
conociendo la debilidad humana,
busca tentarlo, seducirlo, engañarlo…
Jesús marcha hacia ese silencio que permite
ordenar los pensamientos,
afirmar las convicciones,
reconocer las voces mentirosas
y construir respuestas fundadas
en la Palabra que lleva a toda verdad,
que encamina hacia toda justicia
y que posibilita la plena paz.
Desde ese silencio fecundo,
Jesús sale inspirado a hacerse parte
de la gran marcha de la vida,
abrazando y sanando a los tristes y lastimados,
liberando y empoderando a los oprimidos y golpeados,
compartiendo y enseñando a todos por igual,
denunciando y desenmascarando
a los corruptos y a los hipócritas,
señalando un nuevo horizonte
en el que todas las cosas
quedarán expuestas a la LUZ.
Que en este tiempo de nuestra cuaresma,
nuestra marcha sea hacia el silencio
que permite redescubrirnos,
y caminar en esperanza
hacia lo nuevo que,
en Jesús,
se nos anuncia.

Gerardo Oberman

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