January 20, 2017/No Matter What

We were standing near “Mons Meg’ ( one of the largest cannon’s ever on a terrace at Edinburgh Castle in Scotland. My husband whose ancestors were Scottish, was eager to witness the firing of the 1pm gun salute which takes place every day (except Sunday) while we were there. The guards were busy getting ready to fire guns early for some reason unknown to us. We stood with the crowd unsure of what was happening until someone explained that there was to be a special ‘salute’ to the Queen that day.

Me, being me, said, “Well, let’s come back for the 1pm salute. After all, she’s not ‘our‘ queen.

One of the guards heard me and replied, “She’s not ‘my‘ queen, either,” in his distinctive Scottish brogue.

This was back in the 90’s, but even today most Scots do not enjoy associating themselves with England. There have been deep divisions because of the history between the two nations.

I thought of this today as we are about to witness another President being inaugurated. Obviously, this election has been one that highlighted the deep divisions in our country.

Perhaps, Abraham Lincoln stated it best when he said, “A house divided against itself cannot stand. I believe this government cannot endure, permanently half slave and half free. I do not expect the Union to be dissolved — I do not expect the house to fall — but I do expect it will cease to be divided. It will become all one thing or all the other.

If only.

The United States is still a nation divided…in fact, I think we are in danger of being as divided now as we were at the beginning of the Civil War..and that is downright scary.

Christians need to understand that we CANNOT be divided from each other. God has His purpose in all things. He, alone, allows leaders to be put in position. What He demands from us, however, is our allegiance to Him above all else. And He has given us the tools to heal our divisions with each other as we find our unification in Jesus Christ.

Isaiah 1:18-20–Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land: But if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword: for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it.

Unless, and until, we find ways to LISTEN to one another, our ‘house’/country will suffer. We will be at odds with one another. We will breed discouragement, hatred, and bitterness.

We need to stop the accusations and yelling and sit down together to try and find where we AGREE and begin there. Then we need to pray, and pray hard, that we can find ways to see what it is like to ‘walk in each other’s shoes’ and find solutions to our problems.

In this way, we will begin to see how blessed we are by God and invoke change from a point of love and honor…rather than by anger and hate.

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