As I have done in previous Lents I am sharing a daily reflection as part of my Lenten discipline. This year I am using the “Wilderness Wanderings” theme compiled by the “Lent Photo a Day” group. The word appointed for February 28th was “Wall.”
Today, I am thinking about walls. Walls are barriers. They are built for safety or in response to fear. Lately, the idea of a wall that has been in the news has been one talked about by Donald Trump (and other politicians) that would divide the United States and Mexico. To be fair, there is already a border that exists obviously between the countries. But this idea of a wall that Donald Trump has would be to build a modern “Great Wall of China.” Except, I doubt it would one day become one of the great wonders of the world.
It would be one thing if the United States or Mexico were under attack. Then a wall might be justified. Just as was the rationale for the Great Wall in China. But the fact of the matter is, there is no such attack happening. But there is certainly the fear of the other that is at work in this country.
Why are we so afraid? Who are we so afraid of?
Honestly, if I am afraid of anyone, it’s of ourselves. I am afraid of our collective ignorance, hatred, racism, and bigotry which have certainly reared their ugly heads this political season. We have a long ways to go in the United States. What I fear is like Abraham Lincoln said, fear itself. I am afraid that we are giving into fear, and we’re seeing this fear-mongering sweep many up.
I believe as a Christian and Lutheran we are called not to build walls, but to tear them down. We are called not to create barriers, but to break them. We are called to connect, unite, equip, and empower. Not to divide and separate. I believe this as part of my faith.
I also believe that this principle holds within my understanding of what it means to be an American and part of this society built on the great ideas of a “Melting Pot,” and a land of freedom. But, perhaps I have climbed onto my soap box a little much in this post. I cannot stand quietly by and watch this insanity. And therefore, I will not.
I will do all that I can to continue to tear down the walls that we have created so that we can continue to build communities and connections. Who’s with me? What walls are you working to tear down in your life and community?
Image Credit: Great Wall of China