A Hopeful Response to a Rocky Start

2021 has seen a rather Rocky start. We gather some friends from MPUMC and ask to give their take on recent events in our nations capital.

from Steve Gedon:

The American Experience

I am convinced that the church is the best hope for a healthy vibrant society. The Christian life invites us to build relationships and communities as generous servants not self-absorbed consumers. Christianity is so liberating precisely because it is so sacrificial.

When We learn to let go of the things we cannot keep, we gain a new perspective that is stronger and higher that we cannot lose. The world in which we live, is consumed by its lust for power in the here and now fearful someone else has more or will take what little we have. It pressures us to demand our rights, our privileges and to embrace a siege mentality against our enemies. This is precisely what we saw on display Wednesday is the natural chaotic spiral of this kind of tribalism, polarization and demonization. This darkness has slowly seeped into our lives through our Facebook rants, political attack dogs and sensational conspiracy theories that leads to violence and death. This is the darkness of the present age, this is the evil against which we as a church must stand together.

But what is the Light of Christ. it is the realization that in Christ, God is drawing all people home. The restoration of the world.

In 1912 My grandfather passed through Ellis island and fell under the shadow of the Statue of Liberty that proudly proclaims “give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to be free. The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.”

This is why I so love this American Experiment.

Its roots are deeply spiritual and challenges us live out our highest ideals.

As a matter of fact, this is what Paul wrote to the Galatians

There is no longer Jew or Greek, there is no longer slave or free, there is no longer male and female; for all of you are one in Christ Jesus. Gal 3:28 (NIV)

It is the glue that allow for such a diverse community as this one to function as one. And it is that unity that stands in stark contrast to a world that is demanding its rights and privileges.

We are now in the midst of two great pandemics which seek to destroy us on a global scale, one is COVID-19 which is attacking us and killing us physically and the other Narcissism is far more insidious. It attacks us slowly, dividing us and then killing us spiritually with our blessing. The good news is we now have a Vaccine for one, we have Cross for the other. The one will be delivered to us in time, the other we must seek out and choose daily.

Jesus said, “If any of you want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me.” Luke 9:43

1. That’s why I’m calling everyone to renew your vows as disciples. We have far too many part-time Christians. How am I learning, growing in Christ? What good thing can I do today?

2. I’m calling everyone to prayer with us. prayers with us throughout the year.

Prayer is not trying to get God to do what you want. Prayer is humbly trusting God will do what is right.

3. I’m asking everyone to do a little self-reflection, a little confession. Avoid Facebook rants, the negativity and hopelessness. Ask yourself,

Have I added to the darkness or to the light by our actions and attitudes and posts.

Augustine once said, “And now, with God’s help, I shall become myself.”

“I will not allow my life’s light to be determined by the darkness around me.” Sojourner Truth

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