Monday Morning Quarterback; Reflections from your Pastor
If your heart is broken over the most recent tragedy in Florida, I’m there with you. Our thoughts and prayers are certainly with them. But more than our thoughts and prayers, I believe the time has come for us to “repent”. Let me explain; the perception of the word repent is that we feel sorry or guilt over something that we have done or allowed to happen. Typically, the word repent is associated with a threat of punishment if you don’t change your ways. Our response to this guilt might be that we apologize, feel bad or sad and express our sympathy toward those that are affected. Nothing wrong with that. But the word in the Biblical sense (see metanoia) has less to do with feeling guilty and more to do with a “change of heart/mind”. This change of heart is meant to affect our lives and in turn our actions. This change in turn is meant to have a positive impact in our lives and in the lives of others. Thus, repent, is a word that we can use when we perceive something is not right in our world and we believe it is time for a change. I believe it is time for us to repent. I believe the young (and old alike) in our country are ready for a change. I believe that God calls US to be that change. In his “Letter from a Birmingham jail”, MLK penned that the church was once a force to be reckoned with, that the power structure feared the church because it would not accept the status quo. He further wrote,
“If today’s church does not recapture the sacrificial spirit of the early church, it will lose its authenticity, forfeit the loyalty of millions, and be dismissed as an irrelevant social club with no meaning for the twentieth century.”
He wrote these words 55 years ago, and they are as relevant now as they were then. I believe it is time for the church to rise up and take action. To question the status quo and challenge the power structures that still support injustice and violence. It is time for us to repent of our apathy and change our hearts and minds through our actions and speaking out against the systems that keep us spiraling on a cycle of hate and poverty and abuse. Rise up church! The time for change is now!