Alleluia! A new year begins!
2020 certainly was way-up on my weird-o-meter! For the first part of 2021
things will be much the same as they have been for the last ten months or so. But,
I can see a light at the end of the tunnel; perhaps by June 2021 we will be
learning and practicing a new, more relaxed normal.
Being able to mingle socially again will be very nice. I
miss shaking hands and hugging (most of you know I am not much of a hugger, but
I still miss it). Overcoming pandemic will take time, but it will happen.
There is another, perhaps more lingering problem we as a
society and community must deal with; anger. 2020 was a year of extreme anger
in the United States. The effects of violent protests, mass unemployment,
increased poverty, election questions, and a general hatred of others has
allowed anger to take deep root in our society.
Anger breeds more anger, and the cycle continues, gaining
strength as it grows. I am concerned with the problem of how much of what we
really “know” is factual. I have noticed that the TV news stories are very
different depending on which channel I watch. There are five news networks I
scan every morning.
Each one emphasizes a different angle on the same subjects.
They are all guilty of sensationalizing stories, at least partially, and
highlighting a “problem” or “concern” that you as a viewer should be “very
worried” about, but that is not enough. They seem to want us to choose sides
and destroy the “other” side.
I can’t help thinking how “un-American” that seems. I
remember a time when Americans could disagree and still be friends, or at least,
remain civil toward one another. I believe it is the will of God for all of us
to work together for the good of all, not for the benefit of only a few.
A new year is another chance to change for the good. 2021
is another chance to be the people we know we are deep down; honest,
hard-working, devoted, unified. The Book of Common Prayer includes a prayer I
would like to share with you:
“Grant, O God, that your holy and life-giving Spirit may
so move every human heart, and especially the hearts of the people of this
land, that barriers which divide us may crumble, suspicions disappear, and
hatreds cease; that our divisions being healed, we may live in justice and
peace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.” (BCP 1979, page 823, #27)
Let’s use 2021 as a time of healing and unity. We are
better that our anger. We are better together than we are divided. Remember, “A
house divided against itself cannot survive”. (Mark 3:25)
Blessings and Peace to You
ST. ANDREW’S EPISCOPAL CHURCH
555 E. Third Street | Grove, OK 74344