Monday, November 21, 2016

Talking the Talk Doesn't Matter if You're Not Walking the Walk

Last week, I took part in a conversation on Facebook about--what else?--the election. There were several commenters blaming Christians for Donald Trump and his merry band of bigots somehow managing to win. I pointed out that not all Christians voted for Trump and don't share the extremist beliefs of many of those who did support him. Several Christians responded by agreeing with me. One comment had a strong impact on me. The woman  said she believed us, but pointed out that we need to keep saying it, keep telling anyone who will listen, just as Muslims have had to keep trying to convince the world that not all of them are radical extremists like ISIS or other terrorist organizations.


Her challenge stuck with me. When I saw the photo above, also on Facebook, I decided it is imperative that those of us who don't share the beliefs of those who are supporting racism, bigotry, fear, hate and persecution speak out. 

I don't claim to have all of the answers. As I've said before, I have more questions than answers. Doesn't the Bible say man (which I take to mean all of mankind) is created in His image? Wouldn't that mean we're all equal, that one race is not better than any other? If one wishes to nitpick, wasn't Israel supposed to be God's chosen people? 

Didn't Jesus tell us to love our enemies? Did He not respond to those who criticized Him for spending His time with sinners, tax collectors and other "undesirables" that the healthy don't need a doctor; the sick do? Did He not preach that we are indeed our brothers' keepers, telling the rich man to sell his belongings and give it all to the poor? Didn't He say it's easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than it is for a rich man to enter the Kingdom of God? Or do I have that all wrong?

As a Christian, I'm most certainly a work in progress. I still lose my temper, though not as easily as I used to. When God handed out patience, I must have slept in. I've distanced myself from people who might disrupt our hard-won peace and quiet (I guess that's selfish of me). Love thy neighbor is a tough one when you have next door neighbors like mine. I'm trying to change, but it's not easy. Good thing God doesn't expect us to be perfect. 


As a voter, I often find myself conflicted, which explains why I can't vote along straight party lines. I'm really not liberal, but liberal causes like the environment and social programs that take care of the less fortunate are important to me. Healthcare for everyone and Social Security are important to me. As for gay marriage, that's none of my business. Not my lifestyle choice, but I'm not going to persecute anyone who is gay. I may not go march in Gay Pride parades, but if I were a caterer or a baker, I wouldn't refuse to bake a cake or do the catering at their weddings. I don't think we have to agree with anyone on everything to be friends with them--if we did have to, we'd all be pretty lonely. I confess, I'm not comfortable with sharing a public restroom with a man who's decided he's really a woman. I'm pro-life--but being pro-life shouldn't end with being opposed to abortion. What good does it do to bring children into the world, only to let them starve or be abused or abandoned? How can we turn away families, children from war-torn countries who have nowhere to go? I understand the fear of letting terrorists get in--no screening process is foolproof. But I'm reminded of a conversation I had some years ago with a man from one area church who helped the homeless. I asked if he ever worried he was giving money to con artists.

His answer: "I'd rather be helping five people who didn't really need it than miss one who did."




9 comments:

  1. The evangelical leaders who endorsed him stood up to be counted among everything Christ ever preached against. Bloody hypocrites, the lot of them.

    Fortunately there are Christians who aren't anything like them.

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    1. Collin says the evangelicals are our version of radical Islam.

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  2. Of course, we aren't perfect. We're sinners. That is why Christ died on the cross. I do not understand ministers that urge you to vote for a particular candidate as that just doesn't happen in the Lutheran churches. They are such sticklers, that those I've known won't even have a political sign in their yard.

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    1. That's true. I have a close friend who's Lutheran.

      What has always puzzled me is how there can be so many branches of Christianity and they all believe differently on different topics.

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  3. Oh My Goodness You are in my mind !
    I wish I could write like you but my brain does not work like yours.
    Since Daughter is gay I would march if she needed me to but I am pretty accepting of everybody except the ones who sit around and use welfare like an ATM card. Not the ones who really can use it. Just the scroungers where I live.

    I need that photo on my blog if that is alright with you or your whole blog .

    Thank You for being so smart.
    cheers, parsnip

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    1. I got the top photo off Facebook--it's being shared all over the place, so I'm guessing it's okay. As for the rest, you can share my posts whenever you want. I'd be flattered!

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    2. Are you kidding you are FABULOUS !

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  4. I'm a bit of a political junky so I get into arguments about politics fairly often. One of the main things that strikes me, is how easy it is to assume we know what is going on in someone else's heart, and curiously easy to apply that to an entire group of people. It makes discussion difficult and sometimes impossible.

    Just a little while ago, I saw an article about people who have cut off friendships and even refused to let grandparents see their grandchildren because of how they voted.

    No doubt, I am guilty of assumptions too. I keep praying and reading the Word and hoping it'll sink all the way in. I guess all we can do is keep at it, till walking the walk is habit.

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    1. I think our country has been irrevocably divided by this election. It's sad that friends and relatives are allowing it to come between them.

      Prayer is something we all need if we're to walk the walk.

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