A POLITICIAN WHO GOT IT RIGHT
Don’t neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for some have entertained angels without
knowing it. (Hebrews 13:2)
In a time of crisis with the collapse of national unity on the horizon, the greatest of presidents Abraham Lincoln asserted “We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory . . . will yet swell . . . when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.”
These are times that call for the “better angels of our nature.” We need to follow Lincoln’s advice and expect great things of ourselves relationally and ethically. We can be angelic beings, messengers of God in a world of pain, and we can as the author of Hebrews asserts treat others as angelic, that is, reflections of God’s image. We need to expect great things of our nation. That we be a light on hill, that we be just and merciful, that we lead in creating a truly more perfect union at home and help other nations realize their greatness, too. That we sacrifice for the greater good of the planet and the generations to come.The pandemic can tempt us to rugged individualism, caring only about our rights and disregarding the wellbeing of our neighbor. We can turn our backs on the most vulnerable members of our community, acting as if their wellbeing are ours are not connected. We can disparage those with whom we disagree.
We can put our right to do as we please – for example, not wearing a mask – above the good of others.
The times cry out for the “better angels of our nature,” for being our best and highest selves, for going beyond the binary to embrace others as God’s beloved children. Let us be angels to one another, sharing love and good news wherever we are.
Let me see God’s presence in everyone I meet. Let me affirm my highest self and bring out the best in others. Amen.