This year we have had many foreign experiences that has left us scrambling for answers. None of us have done everything perfectly. We have all just been managing the situation and questioning every decision we have made. With that said, we should consider the necessity of present charity, forgiveness, and constant boldness.
When all of this began everyone had an opinion and many wanted everyone else to follow their course of action. Sadly, this left some to act uncharitable. I heard some say that it was fear that had people at home forsaking the assembly and ministers were also fear mongering. Some even stated that the church was bowing to the government and not following God. On the other extreme, others condemned those still meeting in any fashion as tempting God. Some of these statements may have been true about some, but characterizing all as being in those categories is borderline slanderous. Charity should have been shown and Christian liberty given. Also, let us all consider our own actions as we also ask others to be charitable.
In heated times there is often hurt feelings. At the present moment, we should forgive all those who have hurt us. No one is above this need for present forgiveness and forgiving. If we do not forgive then we will find ourselves even more isolated and socially distant.
Though we are to be charitable and forgiving, we are still to be bold in the coming days and weeks. First, we should be bold to condemn false narratives that cannot be proven or verified. Yes, we are all free and at liberty to have opinions of what is going on. However, sharing false information that changes weekly is beneath a believer in Jesus. Investigate and question, most certainly, but do so with caution knowing we are people of truth and God does see every idle word. This principle alone convicts me to try harder. Second, we are to be bold if our religious liberty begins to be put in doubt. We are to obey God rather than man. There may come a time in which we must disregard mandates to serve God. We are not necessarily at that time, but should be prepared to obey if it is deemed unlawful to do so.
In the end, we all need each other. Right now Community is so important while we are in isolation. As tempers continually stay heated and opinions rage, let’s keep from being distracted from the task at hand by staying focused on God’s work in our own local communities.
Originally published April 2020