Wednesday, August 08, 2012
Wednesday, August 8, 2012
Any bitterness or bad temper or anger or shouting or abuse must be far removed from you -- as must every kind of malice. Be generous to one another, sympathetic, forgiving each other as readily as God forgave you in Christ. As God's dear children, then, take him as your pattern, and follow Christ by loving as he loved you, giving himself up for us as an offering and a sweet-smelling sacrifice to God.
So many walls divide the human family. Walls of language, culture and history divide nations. Old wounds and fears, unforgiven injuries and injustices, disrespect and insensitivities divide former friends and families, neighbors and communities.
Nations and peoples harbor anger and mistrust, arming themselves and striking when they fear the other might strike first.
We nurture grudges, repeating old stories about those who hurt or insulted us, hardening our attitudes and maintaining a safe distance between our hearts and their actions. It’s the human condition.
Amid such division the Spirit calls us to imitate the inimitable, to be as God, who tears down the walls that separate soul from soul, so the holy dream of God might come true--and all might be one in a great ocean of Love.
The first wall that must come down is that which distances our hearts from the divine heart, the undivided heart of God.
It’s hard to believe and trust that heart because we know our hearts, which are full of divisions and contradictions. The idea and experience of a heart that wills only one thing--complete and total love for all--is foreign to us, impossible to fathom.
We look at God as we look at others, wondering if we can trust that this heart. Does the heart of God seek to bless me at all times and in all things? What about all the crushing hardships, injustices and searing circumstances that cut to the heart and wear us down?
Even there? Even then?
Even there, even then: The great and undivided Heart who is God seeks our hearts, tearing down walls of fear, mistrust and doubt so that our hearts might be healed in the knowledge that there is One, … there is always One who loves and is love for us.
Only in the destruction of the walls of distrust that divide us from the fullness of the One who is full of love can our hearts imitate the inimitable, following the pattern of God who tears down walls that division may give way to unity and peace.
Pr. David L. Miller