What the Friday?: If Not for Grace

Lay aside bitter words, temper tantrums, revenge, profanity, and insults. But instead be kind and affectionate toward one another. Has God graciously forgiven you? Then graciously forgive one another in the depths of Christ’s love.

Ephesians 4:31,32

It’s Friday in the Commonwealth of Virginia and no one wants to refresh their news feed.

What a week.

I mean, I work in an amusement park (seasonally), and I don’t do roller coasters. This week in Virginia has confirmed the wisdom of that decision.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you already know about the scandals swirling around the Virginia State Capitol.

As I write this, I think that the three top officials, or at least two of them, will stay in office. It’s just a practical reality that the Virginia Democrat party is not going to turn over the state government to a conservative Republican, a.k.a. the next in line.

I have been trying all week to write about this. Sure, there were the days when I was blogging politically under a pseudonym. If you need to know what it was, you already do.

I could have gotten a lot of hits from the snarkage.

But, I don’t do that anymore. And, I really don’t want to play the game anymore.

Still, it’s hard to not be fascinated.

As I posted on Facebook the other day, I have written political thrillers for Nanowrimo that I thought were too far-fetched. I’m not so sure anymore and I need to go dig out some files.

It’s easy to sit at our keyboards or on our phones and pass judgment.

More and more I’m thinking the whole story is not about who we were, but who we are now. I’m not excusing anything, but 1968 Virginia was way different than 1980-85 Virginia. And both are vastly different from today.

I am certain that there are no yearbook photos of me in blackface.

I am also certain that I did some dumbass things in my teens and early twenties.

And, probably a few in recent weeks.

Politically, with my background, it would be easy to condemn both the Governor and the Attorney General. Likewise, I think with the Lt. Governor, the story needs to be heard from both sides.

But, as a follower of Jesus, I’m wondering when we can talk about redemption. When can we talk about grace?

I don’t think either the Governor or the Attorney General is a racist or that either harbors racist sentiments. I don’t think the Lt. Governor should be judged in the court of public opinion.

It is no secret that this Commonwealth has a racist past. So does this country.

How do we account for people changing and views evolving?

If we’re looking for perfect leaders with spotless pasts, we’re not going to find them.

There was only one.

And he offers grace.

Maybe we should too.

Do not rejoice when your enemy falls, And do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles.

Proverbs 24:17

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