These last few weeks and months have been among the most difficult many of us have experienced -- at least on the national front. We have watched divisions deepen and a pandemic become politicized. Each of us has lost something or someone these past months even as many of us have become more keenly aware of our privileged and even insulated lives.
Tomorrow, election day, feels in many ways like the culmination of these months. I hope you know how crucially important voting is. And though we may hold different priorities in the balance of what is at stake in this election, we all do feel that there is much at stake. Within our own community, we certainly do not all agree on which candidate or party to strongly support or strongly oppose, at the end of the day, we are all God's beloved children. We are all siblings in Christ who are called to love God with all that we are and to love each other as we love ourselves.
As Christians and participants in First Congregational Church of Loveland, at the end of the day today tomorrow and every day, we are all invited to the same table -- God's table. The table where whoever you are and wherever you are on life's journey, you are indeed truly welcome.
Please know that you are in my prayers today, tomorrow and in the days to come. Please pray for our local communities, our state and our nation. Please pray and advocate for peaceful responses to whatever outcome we may face. Please also know that I am available for phone conversations anytime over the next few days -- if you need to vent, to cry, to worry, to rejoice or simply to be in prayer with someone you know can love and hold all that you are. You can reach me at 970-405-9184. I also encourage you to participate in the UCC's Pre-Election Day Communion Service of Unity in HOPE if that is something that would be meaningful to you (link at the bottom of this email).
I want to share some of our Conference Minister, Rev. Sue Artt's reflections:
Regardless of which candidates are selected to lead our country, it is clear we have massive work to do in the months and years to come. And in a strangely counter-intuitive, turn weakness-into-strength way, we're more equipped for the journey ahead because we have now seen a better map of the fear, the anger, and the tasks for the mission field. Americans of all sorts and belief systems are hurting, and they are begging us to understand them, listen to them, help them survive.
Today, on the eve of this election, I am praying your peace. I am praying peace for each and every person who sits in a pew or, more recently, on a Zoom link to share in the life of Christ. I am praying for each church leader, moderator, council person, deacon, trustee or elder, who is tasked with ensuring the church is a blessing in their community. I am praying for every chaplain, or other ministry worker, who is bringing light and healing to the work to which they are called. I am praying for every pastor, associate pastor, or youth leader, who is struggling this week to articulate a message of wholeness in the midst of clear and vast separation.
I have run your faces through my mind -- yes, yours too -- and lifted you in prayer for the weeks ahead, so that you have the strength, calmness, agility, and spiritual resources emboldened by the Holy Spirit to run this race which now begins anew.
Praying PEACE for our people, for our nation, and for our world, relying deeply on the guidance of Spirit, and the wisdom of Romans 8:31: "If God is with us, who can be against us?"
Beloved ones, I am also praying for you and for our nation. I am also praying PEACE. Won't you join me?
In love, hope and peace,