Would you rather die in a burning building or drown in the ocean?
They usually asked it form the back seat of a boring car ride.
Would you rather fall into a pit of snakes or have 10,000 spiders crawl all over you?
I cringed at their morbid questions but played along to keep another he touched me war from breaking out.
My answer, more often than not, would be a groan followed by, Neither one!
“Gramma, you have to choose one,” they’d insist.
I have to choose one? I don’t want to accept that I have only two undesirable choices.
I’m grieved because the political front in America is disintegrating into a sophomoric competition of blame shifting and low blows. Where have decorum, respect, and decency gone? Not to mention morals.
We’re being forced to play the Would You Rather Game, and I hear myself groaning more than ever before. I honestly don’t know what my choice will be on the day my answer will be required. A lot of us are groaning and getting ugly with each other as well.
I’m ashamed because our great nation, the land that I love, resembles a circus–a house of horrors if you will. This land of benevolence and generosity has become a showcase for all the ways power and greed corrupt. It has become a global spectacle. Lack of character, morality and integrity leave us all cringing and bewildered.
I’m heartsick because police officers are being murdered in record numbers. My son in law is a police officer with a wife and six children counting on him to come home at night after serving his community.
I’m heartsick because officer-involved shootings of our citizens are now too familiar. It’s becoming harder and harder to identify the good guys from the bad guys. Heated lines are taken to the streets while hatred and fear draw lines on hearts.
Fear is being fostered in every corner of life. It pushes us inside–inside our walls and inside ourselves. An entire population resists connection while we lose the fiber of community and the strength in our camaraderie, both as a nation and as the body of Christ. Necessary trust is whittled to dust and hope is scattered on the wind.
Where is trust found? Who can we trust?
We can’t trust man or man’s systems. We can’t believe what is being spoken, or promised or offered. We can’t. We never could actually.
The words I read in John remind me again that Jesus didn’t trust either. When he walked among us, he always knew we couldn’t be trusted.
Because of the miraculous signs…many began to trust in him. But Jesus didn’t trust them, because he knew human nature. No one needed to tell him what mankind is really like. (John 2:24-25 NLT)
Jesus placed his trust in his Father.
When he was reviled, he did not revile in return; when he suffered, he did not threaten, but continued entrusting himself to him who judges justly. (1 Pet. 2:23 ESV)
Because he trusted his Father, he was able to enter into covenant with untrustworthy mankind. He knew full well that we’d never keep our end of the agreement.
Jesus entered into kingdom-partnership with us knowing absolutely that we would mess it up and get it wrong.
It wasn’t chivalry or heroics that compelled him. It wasn’t the obligation that propelled him through the mire of humanity.
It was Love.
He chose to love, sacrifice for and redeem a people corrupted by sin in every possible way and though grieved, he is never surprised at what he encounters living among us. He came knowing:
He knew that his friends would betray him, religious leaders would kill him and that his bride would be an adulteress.
Jesus, Embodied-Love, commingled with sin-infected humanity offering our only hope for stability, freedom, peace and transformation. A future and a hope. (Jer. 29:11)
We can’t trust political parties or political candidates—our faith can’t be placed in that arena. We can’t trust justice systems or religious constructs—they fail to manage the scope of our sin and immorality and self-absorption.
Jesus entrusted himself to his Father and so must we.
We trust His will, His power and His plan. We trust the completeness of Holy Love to keep our hearts afloat in a sea of depravity.
We entrust our grieving hearts and broken souls to the One who is love, the One who is the Way, the Truth and the Life. The One who is all this world cannot (and will not) offer.
For those reasons, we can live among a crooked and depraved generation without losing our love for them–without losing hope for them. We can encounter failing systems, failing governments and failing religious systems without losing confidence that He contains, sustains and transforms lives.
We can look at the storms and not be shaken.
Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me. There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you? When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am. (John 14:1-3 ESV)
He is our home, both in this world and the one to come.
Don’t let your hearts be troubled! This is our choice, weary friends! We can choose this! And in our choosing, we can propagate hope in a world infected with sin.
DON’T BE AFRAID, FOR I AM WITH YOU.
DON’T BE DISCOURAGED, I AM YOUR GOD.
I WILL STRENGTHEN YOU AND HELP YOU.
I WILL UPHOLD YOU WIHT MY VICTORIOUS RIGHT HAND. –Isa. 41:10
Grace and peace!
P.S. I’d like to warmly welcome my new visitors! I see you from Italy, Germany, Brazil, Norway, India, France, Mexico and the UK! Many thanks to all who visit and follow Grace Grips. In a world saturated with good blogging, I am honored that you would spend a few minutes with me. Thank you for your referrals and for passing Grace Grips along to your friends. A big shout-out as well to those who can take time to comment! It is incredibly encouraging to know if these words inspire you! Big cyber hugs from a timorous author!