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The Resistance Prays

November 5, 2018
By Jo Schonewolf

Today's Top Story
"Nothing certain on the eve of first Trump-era elections" via the Associated Press. "Voters on Tuesday will decide the $5 billion debate between President Donald Trump’s take-no-prisoner politics and the Democratic Party’s super-charged campaign to end the GOP’s monopoly in Washington and statehouses across the nation."
Scripture 
When Mary came where Jesus was and saw him, she knelt at his feet and said to him, “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.” When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her also weeping, he was greatly disturbed in spirit and deeply moved. He said, “Where have you laid him?” They said to him, “Lord, come and see.” Jesus began to weep. So the Jews said, “See how he loved him!" … [Then Jesus] cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!” The dead man came out, his hands and feet bound with strips of cloth, and his face wrapped in a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.” - John 11:32-36, 43-44
Removing the Grave-Clothes
Friends, it has been a long two years since November 8, 2016. We have experienced grief, frustration, rage, and uncertainty day-in and day-out as we mourned the future we had hoped for and struggled to live in the future we had found ourselves in. We have, from time to time, been like Mary at the tomb of Lazarus, mourning a loss that we knew could have been stopped.

But I thank God daily that we have not stopped at mourning. We recognize that our God is a God of new life, even when it seems that there is only death and loss around us, and we have jumped to help that new life breathe again. The Word Made Flesh is the one who brings life where there was death, but it is our task, the task of Christ's body here on the earth, to remove the grave-clothes from that life. We free those around us from the things that bind them. 

Sometimes others are bound by racism, sometimes by sexism, or homophobia, or transphobia, or xenophobia. Sometimes they are bound by poverty and lack of access to education or healthcare. Sometimes they are bound by hate or greed. These and many more ills of our world are the tightly wound strips of cloth which we must unwrap if new life is to flourish. 

We will continue that work tomorrow, as we vote and encourage others to vote, and we will continue that work the day after that and the day after that, no matter what the results of this election are. We have come a long way in two years of resistance, friends. With courage and strength from the Lord our God, we will go even further in the next two. Whatever results tomorrow brings, be encouraged by that.
Act
If you haven't voted yet, reach out today to a friend, family member, or coworker who you know is ambivalent about voting and get them to commit to voting with you tomorrow. If you've already voted, help someone else get informed about local and state races as well as any other measures on the ballot for your area. Vote.org is still a great resource for details.
Pray
Living God, you know our hearts through and through. You know well our uncertain hope. Be with us. Encourage us. Strengthen us and preserve us for the work ahead, the work of freeing your creation from the grave-clothes that hold it bound. Bring us joy tomorrow, and peace and love in abundance throughout the days of our lives. Amen.
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