The great German theologian Karl Barth once instructed that we are to “take your Bible and take your newspaper, and read both. But interpret newspapers from your Bible.” Had Barth lived today, he might have included newsfeeds and maybe even social media, but the point remains inviolate. One must develop and maintain their world view from Scripture rather than current events. The temptation, especially among certain facets of the Christian world is to let events, so called news, tell us how to interpret God’s work and presence in the world.
NBUMC is an affirming congregation. We preach that God loves all and that all means all. We seek to live into it. The “newspaper” is informing us of a very troubling event right in our own community. We are called to interpret this event from our reading of Scripture. Of course, I am speaking of the Jackson County Legislature’s inability to pass an Ordinance prohibiting “Conversion Therapy,” the discredited, debunked practice of trying to change one’s sexual identity from anything other than “traditional” heterosexuality back to the “norm.” Perhaps most distressing is that the failure to pass was based upon three abstentions!
Legislators are elected to legislate. Show some courage and cast a vote! This issue must continue to be at the forefront. Consequently, if you are a resident of Jackson County, I encourage you to reach out to your legislator. There is a map on the Jackson County website www.jacksongov.org which will tell you in which district you reside. Pay particular attention if you reside in the districts represented by DaRon McGee (4th District), Venessa Huskey (2nd District), and Donna Payton (2nd District At Large), who abstained, causing the Ordinance to fail. Payton is at large, consequently, we all should reach out to her.
Will reaching out to your Legislator do any good? I don’t know, but I do know that not reaching out will do no good. As we read the newspaper through the lens of the Bible, we cannot sit idly by.
We finish up our work in John this Sunday as the table is set for Palm Sunday and Holy Week. Do not miss our time together Sunday.
See you Sunday,