Usually I take this space to offer an encouraging word; maybe a light-hearted little piece; or a commentary on the church. Following yesterday’s images from Washington D.C that were broadcast across the country, as a pastor (not as a politician), I am compelled to offer this:
America is divided. Like never before in my lifetime, we are not a “united” state. My heart is heavy and sad. In the midst of such chaos and turmoil, there can be a few things on which followers of Jesus agree. Such as:
- What happened at the Capitol Building yesterday was a disgrace.
- Yesterday’s events have once again exposed that we have problems in our country. Lots of problems. Problems that will not go away overnight.
- Violence is not the answer to our many problems.
- Jesus is correct when he said in Mark 3:25, “If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand.” Houses, churches and/or countries in this context are all the same. Division leads to destruction.
- The answer to our world’s greatest problems is Jesus. We have just celebrated the season when we had the audacity to believe prophet Isaiah’s words considering the Babe of Bethlehem: For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6).
Given the above facts, can we, followers of Prince of Peace, join together in praying for our country? Jesus called us to love and pray for even our enemies. Such a call includes praying for the following people…
- Those with whom we disagree
- Those who voted differently than us
- Politicians and leaders on both sides (all sides) of the aisle
- Those who were hiding in offices as rioters stormed the Capital Building
- Those who were doing the storming
- The police officers who were trying hard to protect and serve
- Our children who watched yesterday’s unfolding drama and today are wondering about the country we will one day hand over to them
My heart breaks for our nation. Our greatest weapon is prayer (Ephesians 6:18). So let’s pray. Our greatest attribute is love. So let’s love one another (John 13:34). Our great temptation will be to take our eyes off Jesus and onto something or someone else. So let’s keep our “eyes fixed on Jesus the author and perfecter of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2).
Will America recover from this divisiveness? I do not know. Will Jesus be Lord when all is said and done? Yes, He will!