Thought for the week – from the Rev.David Jones
Looking ‘over the pond’ to the Presidential race there’s much turmoil and political chaos dividing this great country at the moment. According tothe news channels the election in November may well lead to a constitutional crisis with repercussions for years to come. Political division following months of racial tension together with the mishandling of the pandemic where the death toll is likely to surpass 200,000 this week is reason for great concern and urgent action. Never before has the USA know such a time ofanger and distrust.
Then earlier last week I happened to come across a news clip where a group of three or four were being interviewed by a young journalist. I was dismayed by the tone of their speech as they claimed to be ‘evangelical’ Christians. Their demeanour was aggressive and unkind and this young man was obviously taken aback as he was treated with such disdain and condemned as being part of the ‘fake’ news media. This by a man wearing a T shirt with ‘Jesus saves’ blazoned across his chest.
It wasn’t easy to watch as these supposedly were my brothers and sisters in Christ! Their claim to be ‘evangelical’was negated by their actions and total lack of grace. It’s then that the words of the Apostle Paul came to me where he spoke of the ‘fruits’ of the Spirit which must be seen in the lives of those who truly follow Christ.If just some of those ‘fruits’ such as kindness, gentleness and self-control had been imputed into that conversation what a difference that would have made.
Then later in the week the news broke of the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg who had dedicated her life to the rights of the underprivileged and especially women’s rights. With her homeland in crisis, its constitution under threat and with increasing signs of intolerance and disunity undergirded by rantings of hate and cynicism who knows where the journey from now to November will end. Ruth Ginsburg once said – ‘Sometimes people say unkind or thoughtless things, and when they do, it is best to be a little hard of hearing — to tune out and not snap back in anger or impatience. What a difference! Seems to me that’s the true fruits of faith where gentleness, tolerance and forbearance grounded in love and respect for others brings hope to every situation of conflict and despair. Paul writes in another epistle that this is the ‘most excellent way’ I’d say Amen to that!