Friday, June 19, 2015

Can one person make a difference?

I've been pretty quiet lately.  I've been busy focused on my family and discerning so many things in my life.  Trying to figure out where I am and who I am and what I need to be doing.

This morning I woke up though, in the midst of a conversation with God, asking him what I can do to change this world, what I can do as one person to stop the violence and the hate.  It is so much bigger than just one person.  

My first thoughts were to love more, but my loving those around me and those I meet, just doesn't seem like enough!  I'm working on a sermon for this week, on John Wesley's 3rd rule of his 3 simple rules, Stay in Love with God.  It all ends up with action, that action being sharing God's love however, whenever we can.  But is that enough to change a world filled with hate, violence, greed, and self-centeredness?

I feel so sad and helpless.  Where can we start?  You know, when I first read about the shooting in Charleston, I prayed.  I prayed for the victims and also for the perpetrator.  I did.  I prayed for comfort for the families and friends of the victims and the community.  I prayed for the perpetrator, that his heart would be changed and for his family and friends.  It's hard to pray for those who make us angry, those who hurt us, but that is exactly what we should do. 

Matthew 5:43-48New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)

43 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ 44 But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the righteous and on the unrighteous. 46 For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 And if you greet only your brothers and sisters, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

I love these verses, they challenge me to be a better person.  It reminds me that God loves EVERYONE and honestly, to me it speaks of hope.  Hope that one person can make a difference in this world.  If each person I show love and compassion to goes out and does the same, maybe it could make a little bit of difference.  I don't know, maybe that's a little too idealistic but it never hurts to try.  Right?

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