i'm just going to write and see where it takes me. i've had so many thoughts tumbling around inside my head this week, and i don't even know how to express them. this will likely be a jumbled mess if it comes out as anything at all.

we are so broken. every. last. one. of. us.
and i think if we were able to grasp that a little bit better as a whole society, then we would be able to make strides we never thought possible.

there's a saying in psychology: hurt people, hurt people. and it's so true. and there are a lot of hurting and broken people in the world. really, i think all of us would fall into that category.

it's the nature of the human race.

in this country this week there has been a whole lot of name-calling. there has been a whole lot of anger. there has been a whole lot of fear.

leading up to this election has been a hideous time. a gut & heart-wrenching time. and the end of it has not amounted to anything different.

i think everyone is scared and worried about the state of our country. we are coming to a place of fear and hurt on all sides, but for different reasons. and frankly, i think that fear is justifiable. the fear on both sides.

but we don't have to live there.

we do need to find a way to live with each other.

it breaks my heart that people see christians as hateful. it breaks my heart that people see christians as people who are against a whole lot, but not for much.

because as christians, we are called to love God, and to love others.
we are called to love our enemies. we are called to love.

and i need to have the guts to look in the mirror and recognize the hypocrite staring back at me. because i am one. i do not live out my values perfectly. some days i don't even live them out well. too often i don't love God with all that i am. if i did i would also love others well, because loving others - ALL others - as myself is what loving God would lead me to do.

let he who's without sin cast the first stone.

we cannot spout love, and then spew hate from the same fountain.

i have not listened well to those around me. i have not shut my mouth, opened my ears, and sought to understand people wholly different from myself. not very often.

i have made my circle too small, too insular, too homogenous.

we all need to stop blame-shifting and pushing responsibility off on someone else. we all need to step up, and be accountable for the ways we have fallen short. because we have all fallen short.

we need to be able to disagree with each other, but actually understand the other side.
we need to have conversations instead of debates.

and we all need to add a big spoonful of humility into our coffee in the morning alongside the cream. i should not assume that my perspective is always right just because it's what's inside my head. everyone brings their own experiences and pre-conceived notions with them into every situation. we need to bring some grace too.

how often do i give people the benefit of the doubt? how often do i seek to understand before i seek to be heard?

i've been struck by how much i need to pray for others this week. people that agree with me, and people that do not. people i see every day, and people whom i have never met.

i trust that God is in control. i am thankful that he still holds the world in his hands. but i do not say that flippantly. because i believe God holds the world in his hands. i believe he is in control of this country, and this world.

but others do not believe that. and i'm heartbroken enough at how people have turned on each other even with the hope and belief that i have. what must it be like for those who have put their complete hope in their choice of government leader? it has got to be utterly devastating. absolutely devastating.

we have to have the courage to meet people where they are. we need to climb down into the depths of their despair with them, and give them a hand up whether we agree with why they're despairing or not. when one is despairing that is their reality - meeting them where they are means understanding where they are, whether we think they should be there or not does not change where they are.
it's what the God of the universe did for us.
how can we pretend that it's not our role to do the same for others?

above all else this week i have been struck by how i have fallen short. how i need to take more responsibility for doing what God has called me to do. i have been struck by my failings, and by how thankful i am for the hope that i have despite those failings.

how can i better meet others where they are?
by going to where they are.
at the end of the day, it really is that simple.



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