These are trying times.
Each day, we can choose to react to the world with fear or with hope.
We can surrender to the darker nature of the human spirit, or embrace hope and possibility.
Predominantly white, predominantly male, predominantly Conservative Americans project fear and hearken back to halcyon days of old that never existed. They don’t want the equitable tax structure of 1955, just the racism, sexism and xenophobia.
Fear of others has always been a way for the ruling class to manipulate working Americans as they exploit them economically, spiritually, and politically. But the exploitation of fear has reached new levels as members of the majority fear losing unearned privilege.
A Christianity that entertains a pessimistic, negative world view is a hollow, empty shell of what Jesus offers. “Rejoice and be glad,” Jesus says. And in response some Christians fear strangers, cower behind walls and guns and fail to see God in the natural world they pollute.
Some want freedom to discriminate in the name of religious, while others want freedom to live into their full potentials.
Some strive to dismantle systematic racism and bigotry while others struggle to keep it intact.
Some face the world with fear, while some hold on to hope — hope for dignity and equality and fairness.
The message of Christ is hope. Hope for tomorrow. Hope for a better world and a better way. The love of God is ours to embrace.
As Paul wrote to the church in Corinth, “Love is patient, love is kind. …It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. …And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” ~ 1 Corinthians 13:4-13The message of the Bible is hope.
The hope of the Israelites looking for freedom.
The hope of the apostles following Jesus.
Hope is actively engaging in a positive way to help improve the lives of strangers.
“…if you get involved, and you get engaged, and you knock on some doors, and you talk with your friends, and you argue with your family members, and you change some minds, and you vote, something powerful happens.
“Change happens. Hope happens. Not perfection. Not every bit of cruelty and sadness and poverty and disease suddenly stricken from the earth. There will still be problems. But with each new candidate that surprises you with a victory that you supported, a spark of hope happens. With each new law that helps a kid read or helps a homeless family find shelter or helps a veteran get the support he or she has earned, each time that happens, hope happens. With each new step we take in the direction of fairness and justice and equality and opportunity, hope spreads.” ~ Former President Barack Obama, Sept. 7, 2018
What a perfect message. Always.
— Faith on the Fringe (@Faithonthe) September 8, 2018