“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus”. Galatians 3:28 ESV
“Welcome the huge, sticky, strong problems. In them there are the most powerful opportunities.” Unknown
We can’t get through the day without some mention of cancel culture. This person tweeted this, this person offended me, my rights are being taken, up to and including violence.
Do we cancel ourselves? Statements like, “I could never do that, I’m not smart enough, my past is so horrible, I’m too old/young I’m not a good person (none of us is).” Fill in the blank. We all cancel ourselves. Then blame, resentment, envy, isolation come in to destroy.
My mind screams STOP!
Then I search the Bible. Let’s see… there was the Samaritan woman by the well who had five husbands. Then there was the Roman Centurion who asked Jesus to heal his servant and Jesus was amazed at this man’s faith. There were nine lepers Jesus healed, but only one returned and dropped to Jesus’ feet in thanks. He was a Samaritan. The 12 Jesus picked to disciple, from a tax collector to a political zealot and surely, they had animosity toward each other. There must have been some very intense and interesting dinner time discussions!
Jesus included everyone. He still does. That means you too. The hard part is knowing the right things to say and do to include others. The verse, “Don’t be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” presses on my heart. I’m sure you have had experiences where you did the right thing and much later, maybe years later, it turned out to be a wonderful thing. I enjoy the people at my local grocery and always visit with them, ask how they are, trade jokes and sometimes our challenges. One of the clerks moved, married and has a lovely home, children and career and we marvel at our relationship that came out of something unexpected and ordinary.
The reality is we don’t work, worship, live with what society and the media portray. My circle is struggling, everyday people, like me. Jesus’ circle was struggling everyday people too. He overcame evil with good in his earthly life and does so now. No cancel culture. Such simple efforts at relationships with our Father, ourselves and our communities makes life so much better. And hopeful. And rewarding.
Thank you for including us in everything! Some things are secrets that we will know someday and many things are available right now. Help us to not berate, demean, exclude or cancel ourselves and others. Remind us you are here every moment to encourage, set straight, include and most of all, love us. You make everything beautiful in its time.