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From the Pastor's Heart...
A lot has happened since the troubling events in our nation's Capitol last week. It's not my place to assign blame, but like many other Americans, I do have some opinions. I'm not as concerned about assigning blame as I am witnessing the continued fracturing of the people of this great nation.
What has happened to our ability to discuss our difference of opinions in a civil manner? What has happened to our ability to debate respectfully? It seems most people now feel that to disagree means we must vilify the other. Family members and longtime friends no longer speak to others who disagree. Oh, how that must grieve our heavenly Father! Oh, how it must make our founding fathers weep!
I believe social media has fueled (not necessarily caused) this deep division. I have seen posts recently asking "friends" to "unfriend" if they disagree with their political position. Such posts draw the proverbial line in the sand. Is that some thing we really want to do?
If memory serves me correctly, Jesus only drew in the sand once, and then he didn't draw a line. In John 8: 6-8 we read the story of the woman caught in adultery. As Jesus is being pressured to condemn the woman, we read, "When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, 'Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her. '"
You might remember the next scene as the accusers, one by one, walked away. Jesus didn't condemn the woman either. And he never drew a line. The lesson says he merely "wrote with his finger on the ground".
Friends let us be most reluctant to draw a line in the sand. We never know on which side of the line we might land. Instead, let us pray for those with whom we disagree. Let us pray for our elected leaders, even if we didn't vote for them. And let us remember the example Jesus set and live as closely as we can to that. It's not easy. But it's a solid path upon which to tread. Thanks be to God!