There’s a line from a church song that’s always stuck in my mind. It goes:
“We are called to be prophets to this nation, to speak the word of God in every situation.”
Part of me loves that thought. Another part of me fears that some religious folks will take that call to speak as an invitation to speak unlovingly and irrelevantly to the world around them. (If you didn’t know already, some people view church people’s talking in that way.)
So that prophet thing is about more of us than old bearded men whose names end with -iah. In fact, it might be something that you and I should pay attention to.
Rabbi Abraham Heschel puts us on to something of this sort when he says THIS about prophets:
“To us a single act of injustice–cheating in business, exploitation of the poor–is slight; to the prophets, a disaster. To us injustice is injurious to the welfare of the people; to the prophets it is a deathblow to existence; to us, an episode; to them, a catastrophe, a threat to the world.”
The prophetic part of seeing the immense power of goodness and the deep danger of evil… that’s a “prophet thing” for each of us to pick up.