Prior to Sunday’s morning worship Liturgist Margaret Kettle asked me about including the events of the weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia in the morning prayer. Without hesitation I responded, "yes, absolutely!" As Christians we need to be praying for peace and justice and love to prevail.
In my typical pattern of preparing my heart and mind to preach, I essentially disconnect from media, so unfortunately by Saturday night I had missed the initial coverage of the riot. But since then, I have spent a great amount of time reading the many stories and have been in constant prayer for our nation.
I do hope that you will do the same.
I read somewhere that many are considering this a “social” issue and perhaps it is. But for me, even more importantly, it is a “gospel” issue.
If I understand and preach the gospel, I understand it to condemn any ideology that espouses bigotry, hatred, discrimination, violence...and yes, this includes white supremacy.
To see American streets filled with people, walking while doing the ‘Heil Hitler’ salute is disturbing. To hear people chanting “White lives matter!” makes me want to respond..."All lives matter!!" The marching and the chanting does not represent in any form or way the Christian faith or the values for which followers of Jesus stand.
When there is wrong in the world, we need to remind ourselves of what is right and to respond. What does right look like? We can be absolutely assured of right when we follow not the crowds, not even our hearts, but when we follow God first. When we see something that grieves us, or that we know is clearly wrong, our first course of action should always be prayer. When we try to tackle volatile times, we need God. We need the direction and strength of the One who can heal all the brokenness in this world. God just may be calling you to some action and the only way that you will know that call is to spend time with Him in prayer. And the way that you know your action will be right is when you are guided by God.
Let’s not miss doing what is right...ask God.