Five Minute Friday: If

Repent

Gentle Reader,

So I was asleep on the couch before 6:00 p.m. last night and woke up long enough to wash my face, throw on some sweats and drop into bed.

Kate says: if.

Go.

Like all human beings, there are moments when I intentionally stir the pot or poke the bear because I want to see what happens. It’s like when you fight with a sibling; you know what buttons to push to really drive him crazy. And it always ends with everyone in angry tears.

But when I write about serious issues, it is not my intention to just throw a fire cracker into a circle of people so I can watch them freak out. It’s because I’m observing and participating in what’s happening in our churches, in our country, and it’s all disturbing. Deep, soul-roiling disturbing. I don’t pretend to be the smartest or to know the most, but I know enough to be able to confidently assert that faith and politics, whether of the conservative or liberal variety, have been conflated to the degree that party/ideology is seen as the savior.

We’ve very much become “Jesus, and…” people. Defending abhorrent actions of leaders, believing that the end justifies the means. Jesus and the Supreme Court appointee that we want. Jesus and the passage of this law. Jesus and us in a position of power. 

If we don’t step back and critically, even mercilessly, evaluate our actions, positions and words, we are in danger of truly destroying our witness in this country. People who are far smarter and wiser than I bluntly say that we need to repent. Those who don’t follow Christ need to see us, hear us, repent.

God, forgive us, forgive me, for focusing on the temporal. You tell us that we are strangers and aliens. You tell us that this world isn’t our home. You tell us that we are to be servants, that we don’t have permission to oppress others. You say that if we love You, we will show it by obeying Your commands – to love others, to speak truth, to do justly, to walk humbly. Empower us, Father, to make the choice that we cannot make on our own, which is to be about Your business. To prioritize Your will over and above all else. Help us remember that Your church spans the globe and encompasses all nationalities, ethnicities and languages. Our identity is found in You, not in the soil upon which we were born or live.

Forgive us for turning a blind eye to sin or attempting to justify it because we think we can get something out of the person or the decision. Forgive us for remaining silent in the face of evil. Forgive us for ignoring the bleeding man on the road. Forgive us for our pride and our complacency.

Holy Spirit, lay Your hand of conviction heavily upon us. Show us where we, where I, have gone wrong. Grant us eyes to see and ears to hear. Cleanse us, Jesus. Renew our hearts. Fill us with holy love and zeal. In the Name of Christ, Amen.

Stop.

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9 thoughts on “Five Minute Friday: If

  1. I love this. I love your prayer at the bottom.

    This: Our identity is found in You, not in the soil upon which we were born or live.

    I needed this today. I also struggle with not finding identity in approval. I want to deep in my soul I’m loved by Jesus and let what I do – even what I love – to flow from that love.

    Thank you for writing this. ❤️ Visiting from fmf.

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    1. I’m with you, Julia. I struggle with remembering that my identity and value are entirely based on and wrapped up in Christ. Even if all I do is breathe today, He loves me. It’s not a race. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

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  2. I’m struggling with how to support my oldest sister whose husband passed away four months shy of their 50th wedding anniversary (6/29/18), to feel compassion for the children separated from their parents and to keep from screaming at all the injustice in the world – not to mention the fact that our “Congress critters” are doing didly squat and being paid “handsomely” for NOTHING! My heart aches at what I see in this world and I just want justice for all the oppression I see! I guess the only option is prayer!

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    1. My heart bleeds along with yours, Aunt Lenore. I want things to be better. I want real justice to reign. Like you said, we must pray. We have to get honest with ourselves and allow God to smash our idols. It’s got to start with us. With me.

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