Reconciliation Part Two

I have received several thoughtful comments about Part One. I will post them in the comments section to the website without attribution. Keep them coming. What’s apparent is that we are bothered by the lack of harmony today.

 

One of our hidden fears is guilt by association. Christ faced similar criticism when he was seen in the company of beggars and sinners.  Why would someone who was good consort with people who were bad? Guilt by association has fractured many communities over time, including the Christian community as well as other religious communities. To prove we are right and pure, we practice separation. We settle for the safe bunker of conformity, rather than accepting the reality of conflict and facing it head on, we make it even more real by institutionalizing it.

 

Can’t we as individuals and within our own religious communities do better? To do what God asks us to do, not what the world expects? There will always be times of turmoil, dissension, and even persecution. It is tempting during such times to retreat where we feel safe. However it is precisely during these times we are called to show our community the love God shows us.

 

Today explore how you can reach out with love to someone who by reason of their race, sex, religion, or past behavior is outside your safe zone.  Don’t let that person become a casualty to guilt by association.

 

 

Reconciliation — Part 1

Introduction

 
As I mentioned last week I want to explore for a few days reconciliation. Luis and my friend Charlie have already sent me some things to think about, and I’m sure there suggestions will find their way into our discussion. I want to encourage all of you to weigh in either by sending me your thoughts by email or commenting on the website at www.thehubbellpew.com.
Today’s Meditation:
 
Love has no limitations. It makes for larger circles.
 
Last week I introduced our conversation by saying reconciliation begins and ends with Love. We all have different beliefs — Christian, Jewish, Sufi, Buddhist, Muslim, and there are many subsets as well, but the one thing each has in common is each religion believes it is right. Once we have found where the light shines brightest for each of us, we too believe we are right, and that it is a lot easier to be righteous than reconciled.
Yet, we also realize to love is what we are each called to do. Jesus told us to be in love with God and to love one another. Love is not about being right. Love is about being in a relationship with God and our neighbors, and to love requires reconciliation no matter hard that is.
So how do we begin?
It seems to me that one way is to recognize that we all in the same boat. We all have our failings and are wrong at times, and thus reconciliation begins when we stop setting ourselves apart and judging. Another person’s beliefs, actions, and values may be abhorrent to us, just as ours may be abhorrent to him. God tells us to leave the judging to him, and not withdraw. Separating from our neighbors, condemning one another, and hurting one another is not an option. We must remain in a relationship with all, and once we recognize our commonality we can begin to reconcile.
Conclussion
As I said this is a multiple part series. Think about not about what I say, but what you believe and feel, and let me hear from you.

Reconciliation

I apologize to the followers of the Pew. This week I have been inconsistent in posting due to travel. But I have also been thinking after the recent election.

We are so divided as people, as a country, and in the world — politically, ethnically, religiously, etc — that nothing is being accomplished but anger and frustration. I don’t blame him but we had such high hopes for the President to take us past our differences, but that hasn’t happened. We need a reconciliation. We need to begin with what we have in common, not what separates us.
So, I thought rather than from the top perhaps, reconciliation begins at the bottom — with you and me.
So, next week we will examine in our morning meditations what does reconciliation involve. I’ll give you a hint — it begins and ends with Love.
I ask that you spend a little time these next few days and the weekend while I finish my travels preparing yourself for an adventure. A process of reconciliation. Thank you for indulging me in this week’s lapses. W.

Balance

Suzy and I attended a wedding this weekend. It’s been awhile since we had attended a wedding and the minister’s brief homily reminded me that after the glow of those first few days, months, and years a good and lasting marriage requires balance, compromise, accommodation and mutual respect.

Much of a good life requires the ability to incorporate these attributes into our relationships with others as well. We need to balance our wants and opinions with the wants and opinions of our family, friends, and co-workers. Our way is not always the only way.

There are times to compromise and accomodate — not necessarily one’s core values, but seeking common ground and understanding where another is coming from leads to decisions and endings that leave both sides satisfied not at odds.

Lastly, begin every relationship with respect. No matter what separates you from another respect that individual as you want to be respected. Looking down upon another prevents you from seeing the sky and the stars in a relationship.

In other words begin every relationship like a marriage — with great expectations and planning on it lasting forever.