I think my word for this week is “rift”. The rift in our nation, the rift in our denomination, the rift in the US Christian churches in general.
In our nation, the rift became deeper than ever, when we saw that even the Supreme Court would no longer be holding to the separation of church and state, but would follow one religious opinion to change our laws.
In our denomination, we have this week seen churches vote to leave, following their pastors' heavy-handed preaching of exclusion. The rifts within those local churches are painful and deep, as individuals who don't want to follow this path are left out in the cold. We've known for a long time that this was coming, that this will free us to fulfill a more gracious ministry, but that many wounds will result from the tearing apart.
In the Christian church in general, the right and the left seem to have never been further apart, some taking political stances that have no gospel justification at all.
So, I am imagining today what things will look like in 5 years, 10 years, as we look back on this time of rift. My hope is that we will see that we came out of it with greater focus, strength, and gentleness. That the healing of the rift will make us see more clearly what faith actually teaches: faith, hope, love; justice, kindness, walking humbly with God.