Friday, February 7, 2020

In our Nation, Do We Bless and Curse at the Same Time?

Out of the same mouth came praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be. Can both fresh water and salt water flow from the same spring? My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water. –James 3:10-12.
On the news this morning, I heard Dr. Jeffers, Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Dallas, quote this verse from the Book of James in the New Testament.
Dr. Jeffers related the story of how he was in a room with President Trump, and someone said to the President, “We’re supposed to love our enemies.” The President turned to the pastor and asked, “what do you think of that?”
Jeffers replied with the verse from James, and then went on to explain that “if you love your enemies, you want what’s best for them.” He continued with the statement, “truth divides.”
It seems from the pastor’s testimonial that he considers the policies Christians hold sacred as truth, and that these ideals are splitting the Nation in half. Others don't hold these truths as self-evident.
Dr. Jeffers is correct. In this day and time, we have a great political divide, and it seems both sides of the gulf speak with both blessings and cursings. Bless this one, and curse that one.
Can we find a way to love our enemies while still standing up for the ideals Christians hold dear? And what are those ideals? Here’s a few: The Right to Life. Freedom to worship.
There’s a lot of discussion today about prayer. Both sides pray to win and dominate the other. Is that what we should pray for?
I disagree with many, but I pray for them. I ask God to keep them safe from physical harm. There are crazies out there who want to physically hurt people, so I pray for God to keep all government leaders safe.
I pray they have wisdom as they debate and decide on what’s best for our country.  The decisions they make affect us all.
I also ask the Lord to soften hearts and to always let His plan succeed.
I ask Him to help me accept whoever He puts in charge, because, ultimately, I know for some reason, He’s the One who put that person in place.
I seldom reply to someone with political differences, but when I do, I attempt to do so in a civil, kind manner. After all, a healthy discussion is the way we learn. Our Founders offered many debates over our Nation’s founding. The arguing became so bad that at one time, Benjamin Franklin called for prayer, and he wasn’t an overly religious man.
In summary, here’s a few items I believe both sides can pray.
1.   Thank God for our Nation.
2.   Wisdom to make decisions.
3.   Keep leaders safe.
4.   A willingness to work with each other.
5.   Show kindness, even in disputes.

I’ve always liked the Serenity Prayer.
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.

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Sarah at Christmas