Instruments of Love and Gentleness

The times need healing, and we have the balm.

Once again, I am living through historic moments. I survived Watergate. I survived the traumas of the 1960s and 1970s, and I survived as many Marines and Navy Corpsmen I served with died. My mother, a firm Nixon supporter, changed her mind when the tapes were revealed and she discovered the President’s “use of curse words,” as she put it. Not what he did, but his language devasted her.

These current times are going to exaggerate partisan tribal reactions and regional differences, and will attempt to overwhelm and obscure what is true and what is false. I am calling on my Christian brothers and sisters to not allow our political differences to fracture our relationships with one another. We are, first of all, citizens of heaven, and, secondarily, citizens of the United States. Let us be good citizens in the country that awaits us. We are united with angels and departed brothers and sisters, and as the Carter Family once sang, that circle is not unbroken.

Brothers and sisters, these are times for prayer. Not all of us are of one mind politically, but we should be of one mind in our love of Christ and one another. May we enter into dialogue with one another with respect and courtesy. These are times to allow our union in Christ and our communion as Christian brothers and sisters to tenderize our differences. These are times for us to pray for revival, for truth, for healing.

The political surgery in our country appears to be just beginning, opening up who knows what, and if so, the wounds might well be raw. May we who follow Jesus be instruments of love and gentleness, rather than, like a straight razor, seeking to slash one another’s throats.

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