I just came in from my morning walk.
It is right breezy out there. My devotions led me to this…
“Don’t hit back: discover beauty in everyone. If you’ve got it in you, get along with everybody. Don’t insist on getting even; that’s not for you to do. “I’ll do the judging,” says God. “I’ll take care of it.”
Romans 12:17-19 The Message
I have seen some bitter times. I was in the middle of my secondary education during the days of school integration in Alabama. There were many violent things done and said.
I was a high school student during the hottest years of the Vietnam War. There were many wounds and scars and hurts - enough unpleasantness to profoundly affect my generation for the entirety of our lives.
I have lived through 16 presidential elections. You don’t need much imagination to grasp how unpleasant much of that has been.
I have never seen anything like we are seeing now. Not even close.
And something has got to give. Someone, somewhere, somehow has to find a way out of this mess, end this polarization, overcome this incessant strife.
Many of us are looking to next week’s election for an answer. Not to burst your bubble but I am absolutely convinced that the election is going to widen the gulf. We hope a great author, or a unifying moment (even if it is a natural or social disaster) will move us from the hostility. Perhaps it will. But I’m not holding my breath.
It is well known that I have only the most rudimentary intellect and only the most simple of approaches. I happen to think that is a good thing because it keeps me from looking to the grand and sweeping and keeps me alert to the simple and applicable.
For God has always used the small and gentle to get it done.
I am not the least bit pessimistic about the outcome.
I happen to believe that the answer lies within us. I am convinced that it is a gift from God that those of us who follow him in the ways of Jesus can readily see and apply.
So what if it is up to me - and you? What if we have to forgive? What if we have to show mercy? What if we have to love our enemy? What if the answer isn’t “out there” but “in here?”
What if being kind is not just a cool thing but the very call of God on our lives right now?
I happen to think that the way out of this spiral of death travels right through you. Over the next week the bitterness and rancor and pervasive pessimism is going to ratchet up. I can feel the tension growing by the nanosecond.
What will you and I do to be different?
Because we’ve seen enough of the other crap.