The last few weeks have felt a little crazy to me. Difficult, confusing events have taken place in the world and even in my local community. The loss of major world figures, missing persons found dead and violent shootings in mid-western small towns fill our news feeds. And then there is the ever grumbling and groaning political world. A presidential race marked by the most bombastic personalities and horses of many colors. Lawmakers and corporations instituting a new normal with many scratching their heads.
Regardless of your candidate, position or leanings it is easy to look at the world today and feel much like Chicken Little who felt the need to warn his friends that the sky was falling. We see violence all around us and wonder what the heck happened to humanity. Simple disagreements turn into outrage and shootings. High schools have become stages for real life crime scene investigations - weren't they meant to be a place for education, proms and pep rallies?
It's easy to get sucked into the debate and the debacle. I even found myself reposting an article the other day on my Facebook feed which led to argument and some hurt feelings. I regret that because my hope is to always use social media to bring light to people's lives. As I sat back and read everyone's comments I realized something about every person in that conversation. Every one of those individuals loves their families deeply, serves the community around them heartily, and desires a world where peace reigns supreme. I also thought that everyone of those people, no matter their viewpoint, is part of the world God so loved. Not one person gets to escape God's love in that He sent Jesus to die for every last one of us. Liberal, conservative, gay, straight, brown or beige.
I'm also sensing that many of us who believe in God and Jesus think America is the final chapter of His story. Not so. God is way bigger and far more eternal than our patriotic minds can fathom. While I do believe this country was born out of a desire to serve the Lord and worship Him freely, it does not make us any more special or any more immune from the struggles His son, Jesus promised we would have. In fact, the love of Christ has always flourished in the most difficult times. So perhaps instead of wringing our hands we should clasp them together in prayer and ask God to show us how to love those who hate us or simply disagree with us.
It's time to portray our real belief. For some, it seems, as if the sky or God, Himself is falling because a country is struggling through some growing pains. This thinking is not based in the truth of Scripture. As the Psalmist says over and over, "Your Name Oh Lord, endures Forever". He does not say, "America endures forever".
Where are we placing our faith? If it is in a country or candidate, we are failing at our faith and are certainly not giving a true account for the hope that we have in Christ. I believe God is who He says He is because He came to earth as the man Jesus Christ and gave Himself to die on cross for the sins of all who would walk the planet - not because I live under the all mighty red, white and blue.
God was God long before America and He will be God long after America is gone. It's time to step back and look at the big picture. We were placed in the world to share Christ's love, not to demand our rights. Yeah, that's tough to swallow because I love my constitutional rights and freedoms but in the eternal scheme of things, they are not why I was created.