The stress levels surrounding the recent presidential election were unprecedented.
Voters from both sides of the aisle hoped and prayed that we would at least see an end to the mudslinging after Election Day. But much to our dismay, it hasn’t stopped. If you are still fatigued over the whole ordeal, you are not alone!
If your candidate won, you were probably surprised, and relieved. But now you’re tired of the outbursts and becoming callused to all the uproar.
If your candidate lost, you are navigating through the five stages of grief, and wondering (or even fearing) what life will be like in the coming years. Either way, the bottom line is we are ALL stressed about our neighbors these days, and that threatens our big opportunity.
What opportunity you ask? The opportunity to help heal this nation.
The opportunity to love and serve each other like never before. It’s a time of Thanksgiving, but instead of gathering around the proverbial table to break bread together, we are all hunkered down behind our fences and walls.
Instead of talking, reminiscing and laughing, we are plugging our ears as the word grenades continue to fly overhead on social media, 24/7. Instead of seeing each other as one human race, one American family, we are still preoccupied with taking aim at Republicans and Democrats, Liberals and Conservatives. And worst of all, we are allowing the fear and anger mongers to define us, and set the parameters of our discourse.
One thing that became apparent to me during this election cycle was the fact that no one election or elected official was going to single handedly solve our country’s problems. And the past eight years taught me that this extreme political polarization that has consumed us like a wildfire will never lead to peace and prosperity.
The answer my friends, in it’s simplest terms is love. Love cannot be elected. Love cannot be legislated. Love is created by you and me. We are in charge of it, we make it, we own it and we freely and willfully give it away to multiply and take on a life of its own. That should be wonderful news to a nation weary from a long fight with oppressive forces, and anxious about the next four years.
Love is our opportunity. Who can you reach? Who is in your sphere of influence?
See others for who they are, not who we think they should be.
Choose to hear them out if they’re upset, instead of trying to talk over them. Really listen, as opposed to picking your next words while their lips are moving. Understand that odds are, you cannot change their outlook with a talking point, but your presence and undivided attention may speak volumes about your relationship.
Commit to helping. This will look different for all of us, but that’s the point. Each of us adds something unique to the recipe. The trick is not caring if you are the only one. The power is unleashed, the ripples grow into waves and the impact is felt most when you just decide to love, serve and help anyway. You want to exercise your liberties? Here’s how. Show everyone that you do not need anyone else’s permission.
Two thousand years ago, Jesus Christ proved that Love is the most powerful force in the world. Quite frankly nothing can change our mess of a land faster. Look at those fences and see how everyone is on edge. We have what it takes to knock those walls down, to ease the tensions and light our collective future.
If we don’t act, we can predict what will happen. More stress, more anger, more uprising, more fences. We as believers have no good reason, no excuse not to act. We have no right to rest. Our families, our communities, our nation, our world needs help.
When Christ displayed the awesome, unstoppable power of love, He used it not to destroy the world, but to win it. We too can wield it to win back our homes, our neighborhoods, our generations and our nation.
All it takes is the will to come out from behind the fence, to step into the divide, and tend to the wounds of those within reach.
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