Sunday, August 13, 2017

What I Want To Hear From The Pulpit Today

Yesterday will not go into the scrapbook as a red letter day. First, we said goodbye to a couple of thirty-plus year friends who have retired and moved away, then that debacle of racist evil in Charlottesville, and finally Bryce Harper blows out his knee. And this morning, I still have a headache.

So, today I will go to church. While ordinarily I don't like any sort of political opinionating from the pulpit, today I want to hear a word about Charlottesville. For one thing, what happened there yesterday wasn't politics. It wasn't even protest, correctly defined. It was a violent outburst of hatred, of enmity one for another. Those who paraded the grounds of Thomas Jefferson's University carrying Nazi flags weren't making a political statement, they weren't airing legitimate grievances. They were attempting to start a race war. They used the fig leaf of a statue removal as the barest of coverings to gather together and celebrate their hatred. The man who plowed his car into that crowd was not attempting to persuade anyone, he was bent on murder.

So, I want to hear a strong voice from the pulpit this morning calling this assault against my country exactly what it is, and calling us to repentance for our apathy. I don't want to hear any mealy mouth temporizing, no moral equivalence claptrap. The entire sermon doesn't need to be about Charlottesville. The transcendent is more important to me than the temporal. But I'm not interested in having this swept under the rug either. Yes, there is hatred and violence coming from both sides in America. But not yesterday. Not in Charlottesville, Virginia, less than an hour away from my home.