The news leading up to election day has not only caused a great deal of division, it has also raised a lot of fear as election results are announced. The news this morning in Phoenix included a story about how there are people who live in the downtown area who are boarding up windows and planning on staying inside their homes to avoid the violent protests they anticipate happening. All of this tells me that it is time to remember who we are.
Remember Who You Are As Disciples Of Christ – more than any label that people use – democrat, republican, liberal, progressive, conservative, etc. – our identity is as disciples of the One who taught us about love and grace. This is your primary identity that guides our thinking, and our actions. Hold on to the values you have learned through the life and teachings of Jesus.
I Corinthians 12:12-14 – For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. For in the one Spirit we were all baptized into one body—Jews or Greeks, slaves or free—and we were all made to drink of one Spirit. Indeed, the body does not consist of one member but of many.
Remember Who You Are As People Who Forgive – Family members and friends have experienced being on opposite sides of the political divide these last few months. As we face the future we do so together. Be quick to forgive one another for the comments made that have caused wounds.
Ephesians 4:1-6 – I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, making every effort to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to the one hope of your calling, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in all.
Remember Who You Are As People Who Love – As we read scripture, as we learn from Jesus, one of the lessons we learn is that Christ-like love is an action, not an emotion. This type of love shapes how we interact with others no matter how alike or dissimilar we are.
I Corinthians 13:4-7 – Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
On this election day, if the election does not turn out the way you want it to, Remember Who You Are. If the election results are just what you hoped for, Remember Who You Are.
The people and churches of the Desert Southwest Conference know that this is true: God calls us to be a courageous church: Loving like Jesus – acting for justice – united in love.
We will remember who we are and what we are called to do. We will remember the words of Bishop Hoshibata when he said that the day after … someone will go to the church, put a key in the lock and open the door. The day after… someone will turn on the lights and begin to do what is needed, for the hungry still need food, the homeless still need shelter, those who struggle, still need help.
There is work for us to do, my siblings in Christ. Let us rise up, with grace, and fulfill the call of Christ.
Praying for Peace during this uncertain time.
Your sister on the journey,