We often speak of John Wesley extending a hand to those who have things in common. We speak of his quote of doing good as often as we can. Yet, I ask you, where is this evident in your blogs and Facebook posts lately?
Where is there evidence of goodwill and charity when you insult the intelligence of differing political views? Where are you offering grace to those who may not share your view on party allegiance? When do you admit, based on the information available and reasoned thought, a fellow Christian may end up at a differing opinion as yours?
In his sermon, “On Charity,” John Wesley writes,
“’Love is longsuffering.’ It endures not a few affronts, reproaches, injuries; but all things, which God is pleased to permit either men or devils to inflict.”
You may well agree to disagree agreeably and that is our right and privilege under our Constitution but what of how we speak under the grace of God and the love of Jesus Christ? Is the insulting of candidates appropriate? Are the snide and crude pictures an evidence of longsuffering love?
I appeal to you all who call yourself United Methodist to consider who you represent and what fruit is evident when you speak with words out loud or with words on a screen. I pray that this year be a year of longsuffering love for the sake of the Gospel of Jesus and the people who claim the name United Methodist.