So, although I usually bring the funny (or at least attempt to) today I will be a lot more serious. Consider yourself warned.
Lately, as I have been unemployed I have had a bit of extra time. Not much, but enough to do some reading and have time to reflect. I just finished reading Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe. Hands down best book I have ever read, and I read a lot. I have never read something so honest. Ms. Stowe gracefully interweaves stories to show what life looked like during the time of slavery. It was difficult at times to read the pages and there was more than one occasion where I struggled to read through the tears in my eyes.
As a mother, I couldn’t imagine the pain of having your child sold as an infant. However, even worse to see your beautiful and pure teenage daughter sold to an owner that would be able to do whatever he pleased with her. Families broken, husbands and wives separated with no idea where the other would end up. And all done while some churches of the time used the bible to prove that it was right. All the while those people with any ability to look beyond themselves and past the fear of speaking against the world could clearly see that this was not something that could ever be right.
It made me furious with the “Christians”
The faith of many entrapped in slavery was amazing to me. They depended on God daily for all of their needs to be met and they knew that no matter what happened on this earth, there was nothing man could do to take heaven away. In the end they would be rewarded in heaven and that God would deal justly with everyone else. Uncle Tom had such faith that he begged his master to repent and be saved even as the man was giving him the beating that would ultimately lead to Tom’s death.
God’s people don’t always exist in a beautiful building with the best equipment and a great show on Sunday mornings (although there are some great people in those buildings too)
We live in a world full of ‘so-called’ Christians, myself included at times, that have lived such an easy life in such a worldly culture that we forgot what being a Christian really means. It doesn’t mean you are always right or better than anyone. In fact you will often be considered an outcast. It doesn’t mean you say ‘I will pray for you’, or ‘I am blessed’ and then turn around and spend the rest of the week doing as you please selfishly. It doesn’t mean that your life will be easy or full of money. Indeed blessings come in greater forms than wealth or excess. It seems even back in the days of slavery we were lost to what loving God really looked like. And as I see the Westboro Baptist protests, signs bullying teenagers at abortion clinics, and anti-gay messages strewn about I find that many are still lost. Many, but not all.
I choose love. I have the opportunity every single day of my life to do something for someone else. I can spend every day of the rest of my life, no matter how long, trying to love others. I don’t mean just serving at a soup kitchen or even giving money or items to people. I mean saying kind words, praying for those that are lost or hurting, and treating each person I encounter like the treasure that they are. We were all bought and paid for. None of us is any better than another. I pray that I remember this always, and as you judge this post no matter what decision you come to, no matter if you like it or hate it, subscribe to my posts or de-friend me on Facebook. I will still love you and be praying for you.
And if you know me and see that I am struggling I hope that you will pray for me as well as we all fall short.