Love is Resistance

Most of us who have studied narcissism and dealt with it in our families see lots of red flags in our new president’s character. So how can we as citizens of God’s kingdom make a difference? We might not approve of the choices of the president, but we don’t have to contribute to fear, we can find subversive ways to bring hope and love to the people around us. Sometimes love is resistance.

At this point it doesn’t matter who any of us voted for. I say this–not because I think this man will be a better president than Bernie Sanders or Hillary Clinton, but because whoever we voted for it is now a moot point and thinking about this will only tempt us into arguments and living in the past.

In this present moment well over half of the Americans who voted are disappointed and many are afraid. People are worried about losing their healthcare, their jobs and in some cases, even their lives. We can’t fix all these issues, but what we can do is walk alongside those who are marginalized and hurting.

We have several choices–we can sit paralyzed with despair and act helpless, we can choose to be indifferent and sit on the sidelines, we can choose to sit in self-righteousness over whether we voted for the right candidate, or we can forget about self and embrace the hurting in our communities with empathy. Our highest calling is to encourage the hurting around us and roll up our sleeves to include those who might be excluded. We have an opportunity to extend kindness, love and grace to our neighbors, friends and coworkers.

There are many things we can do to encourage the people around us.

  • We can march with women this Saturday (you don’t have to go to Washington, you can even organize your own march.)
  • We can practice good self-care, regardless of what is going on at the capitol, joy and peace come from nurturing ourselves and others.
  • We can go to places we might not normally go and listen to people who are not like us.
  • We can speak up when we see injustice happening.
  • We can let our voices be heard even before things happen.
  • Whether our friends voted or see things the way we do or not, we can always be kind.
  • We can share our gifts with others whether those gifts are music or baking cookies or writing a blog or book or giving a massage.
  • We can just be there for all people we know and let them know they matter.

 

My subversive political act for the day is sharing cookies. I’m not saying my cookies will change anything in the political world, but it’s my way to reach out and add some joy and kindness in the world. Sharing cookies is not about food as much as it is letting people know they are valued and not alone. These cookies are going to the hospital where my husband works just to spread some cheer on a rainy January day.

I’ve been thinking about how Jesus shared food while He was on earth. He broke bread not just at Passover, but every meal he ate with others. And many of those others were outcasts of society or damaged, fear-filled citizens of a brutal Roman kingdom. Jesus didn’t fix their laws, but He came to let all of us know we are all of value. He also told us not to worry about tomorrow, because today has enough trouble of its own.

So no matter who we voted for, no matter what we have to give, the most important thing we can do right now is come alongside others and let them know they are not alone. This is the way we can bring courage to our communities. We have no idea what tomorrow will bring, but for today, we can share what we have with those around us. Let’s all go out and spread a little love.

P.S. If you want the cookie recipe, you can find it here.

3 Replies to “Love is Resistance”

  1. “…or we can forget about self and embrace the hurting in our communities with empathy. Our highest calling is to encourage the hurting around us and roll up our sleeves to include those who might be excluded. We have an opportunity to extend kindness, love and grace to our neighbors, friends and coworkers.”

    Well said – that’s so so important, now more than ever. I forget if it was MLK who said that love is greatest when it is set against struggle? Thanks for a really important article, and for the examples and encouragement for doing these things. Those cookies look great, by the way – I am sure they will be appreciated.

    Over here in Australia we are having similar political issues as you are facing now in America. Our Obama-equivalent administration was voted out a few years back and the then-elected PM had all the hallmarks of a sociopath and a megalomaniac. He was misogynistic, made refugees’ lives miserable, did his best to scupper progress with LGBTQ issues, gave billions of our taxpayer dollars to wealthy corporations as handouts, and tightened the screws on our most vulnerable: The unemployed, the disabled, the single mums, the pensioners. We had loads of women in our previous government, including in ministerial positions, but that was reduced to very few under the Abbot regime, and initially only one in any kind of major role (who happened to be called Bishop). It prompted commentator Annabel Crabb to write, “Mr Abbott has announced his new Cabinet: Nineteen blokes and a Bishop. Perfect.” The joke there is partly that from the time he was a lad, Abbot had always said he’d either become either Prime Minister or Pope (preferably Pope, but he didn’t get there).

    Abbot got booted out by his own party within a year, but the replacement wasn’t much better, and at the moment his party are living it up on the public purse to have helicopter rides, attend polo matches and private weddings and go on holidays – e.g. the ex treasurer spent $12K bringing his family out for a WA holiday, and charged it to the citizens because he opened a rodeo. This is not made up, even though it sounds like it. It was perfectly “legal” under their rules. The guy is now our ambassador for the US. Stinks to high heaven. This is the same guy who said, “The age of entitlement is over” when he wanted to cut unemployment benefits to nothing for the first six months of someone’s unemployment. The pollies routinely have $400 and over bottles of wine on our account in their “business dinners” and that’s more than an unemployed person gets to live on in a week, and it’s not the unemployed people’s fault that there aren’t enough jobs…

    Over here a lot of Australians who are upset by all this have joined in a grass roots movement called “Get Up” to protect social justice and the environment. So I now write letters to politicians and boards and sign petitions whenever they ask me to, and it’s actually making a difference to have a movement like that. Get Up also campaigns very hard in marginal seats to bring social justice and environmental issues to the forefront:

    https://www.getup.org.au/

    Do you have that sort of thing in the US? I love how easy they make it for me to take action by keeping me informed and telling me when letters need sending and where to etc, and by sheer people power. It’s sort of like Amnesty International’s awareness raisers back in the day, but broader. I am hoping that the silver lining to what is going on politically in the US and Australia will be another galvanisation of the public like there was in the 1960s, with people taking action in the name of justice and decency and neighbourly love.

    You said it perfectly: “So no matter who we voted for, no matter what we have to give, the most important thing we can do right now is come alongside others and let them know they are not alone. This is the way we can bring courage to our communities. We have no idea what tomorrow will bring, but for today, we can share what we have with those around us. Let’s all go out and spread a little love.”

    Thanks, sister. God bless and keep.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes, we have grass roots movements to protect the environment and stand up for women’s right in America too. It is good to remember our communities are bigger than our leaders.

    Peace and freedom!

    Cherilyn

    Like

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