Thursday, January 22, 2009

Reconciliation: Our Inevitable Destination

Keeping in mind the limitations of human institutions, today the country of my birth eradicated one of many enduring obstacles that aim to block the path towards our inevitable destination of reconciliation. Like rain in the desert, today quenched an eight-year thirst for those of us eager for truth and integrity. President Obama spoke powerfully the truth of integrity saying, “…As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals…” He understands correctly that we endanger our safety when we forsake our humanitarian ideals for the barbaric instruments of torture.

Yet more important than my eight-year thirst for change, today African-American citizens old and young witnessed a great harvest of seeds planted more than forty years ago. Non-violent civil rights activists planted those seeds by enduring the brutality of nightsticks and jail cells so they might cultivate the soil of their citizenship with the tools of the 1960s civil rights legislation. While researching my thesis I had the opportunity to meet one of those courageous seed planters, the Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth. Here was a man who survived the bombing of his home, the sting of bike chains and brass knuckles, while never allowing himself to succumb to hate.

Where do we go from here? For those who claim Christ, we must continue to temper our reliance on a fallen government. Though I believe this new administration will seek to implement Godly principles, it will not give itself fully to the will of God. Therefore, we cannot depend on Obama to bring us to our journey’s end, but rely on Christ alone. For it is Christ who makes possible the ministry of reconciliation that eliminates the barriers not only between God and man, but also tears down the walls between each other.



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