MOVING FORWARD IN FAITH #6
(A NEW DAY IS DAWNING)
In recent months I have found such comfort in the awareness that our United States’ system of democracy is relatively new in the scope of history. Several articles and podcasts have reminded me how our government is evolving and correcting as we go. We have certainly had our obstacles and difficulties to overcome, but we keep progressing as the issues are discovered and addressed.
Today let’s take heart. Let’s take heart that God is still working on us as individuals, as a country, and as a world. In God’s time, life itself is relatively new! We are all works in progress, and God continues to offer us guidance and correction as we go along. What a reassuring, gracious gift we have in knowing that as imperfect as we are, we are still beloved. Our mistakes and blunders can even become tools of wisdom and insight that mature and perfect us, as individuals and as citizens who share this world.
Where can we take heart today?
COVID 19: The vaccines are being distributed and eventually everyone who wants them can be protected. In the meantime, let’s keep honoring and protecting one another with masks and social distancing.
COUNTRY: Here in the United States, President Biden and Vice President Harris took their Oaths of Office this week. I found such hope and joy in the uplifting messages, the inspirational poem, and the beautiful music on Inauguration Day. Even more, the diversity of those who have been called to serve, as well as the people present – an array of different genders, races, orientations, ages, and political parties – visibly demonstrated the strength and heart of this United States. The day was a lovely reminder that my country is still a place of incredible resilience, diversity, goodness, perseverance, and hope.
CONNECTION: I believe that, at our core, most of us hold the same loving ideals, hopes, and dreams for ourselves and our world. Don’t we all hope for a world of peace, where people have enough to eat, where education helps everyone discover and achieve their dreams, where there is no more sickness or suffering or abuse or neglect, where everyone can have the health care they need, where lives are no longer cut short by gunfire or abortion, where taxes will benefit more than burden, where fear and hatred are diminished, where creation is appreciated and wisely stewarded?
We only differ on the ways and means to work toward a world like this. We are connected by much more than legislation; we are connected at the most meaningful and significant levels of goodness, generosity, kindness, and compassion. When we begin realizing the depth of our connection and the number of ideas and dreams we have in common, we have a stronger foundation from which to work together with greater understanding and cooperation.
CHRIST: Most of all, and best of all, we move forward as people with our hope in Christ. God is present here, within and among us, and we will never be abandoned. We can keep learning and growing as God’s beloved people, trusting that we are being perfected, individually and collectively, into a world of peace and joy. This journey of maturing and learning is a gift and purpose for our lives. The journey is a long one, but we are in good company. We are not alone. We have God. We have one another.
Philippians 1:6 (NRSV)
I am confident of this, that the one who began a good work among you will bring it to completion by the day of Jesus Christ.
Psalm 133:1 NRSV)
How very good and pleasant it is
when kindred live together in unity!
If then there is any encouragement in Christ, any consolation from love, any sharing in the Spirit, any compassion and sympathy, make my joy complete: be of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves. Let each of you look not to your own interests, but to the interests of others.
John 16:33 (NIV)
I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.
Bible verses taken from BibleGateway.com: A searchable online Bible in over 150 versions and 50 languages.