Read: Psalm 133:1 (NIRV) “How good and pleasant it is when God’s people live together in peace!”
Our country has just gone through a very difficult time. There is deep division. Some point to a long pattern in which victims of sexual assault are not believed, and in which victims are characterized in the worst possible ways. From that perspective it is no wonder that such assaults go largely unreported. They see a highly credentialed person who was reluctant to come forward because of the predictable storm that would engulf her life, career, and family.
Some see a man with a long and distinguished judicial record, who has had multiple background checks at every level of his advancement, a man who has respected female colleagues and is now a committed family man. They do not believe that such a man could have done what was alleged, even as a teenager.
This is NOT a political post. I am not going to “take sides” here, and I encourage you NOT to bring partisanship into this conversation. The purpose of this post is to acknowledge a simple truth: our nation is divided, and in need of healing. It seems likely that the differences described above will ever be resolved.
So, how do we continue “our walk together”, when there is division and differences? First, let us remember that we are not the first generation to experience division. History tells us that previous generations have gone through harder times than these. Secondly, we embrace a basic hope and trust. Martin Luther King jr. famously said, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice.” King was quoting Theodore Parker, a Unitarian pastor, who was working for the abolition of slavery in the 1850s, a time of deeper division.
Finally, I want to leave you with the wisdom of John Wesley, a founder of Methodism, and encourage you to consider deeply, to meditate on his words:
“Though we cannot think alike, may we not love alike? May we not be of one heart, though we are not of one opinion? Without all doubt, we may. Herein all the children of God may unite, notwithstanding these smaller differences.” ― John Wesley
Shalom, Pastor Rob Nystrom