God has not left the field. God’s kingdom, empire, nation still is here and at hand. The next mission starts! – By Richard Davenport

 

We may grieve or exult in the result of the mission that was the election season, but we all move forward to what can we bring to the mission before us. God has not left the field. God’s kingdom, empire, nation still is here and at hand. The next mission starts!

Richard Davenport

Bible and Spiritual Life Community Executive Director · July 2004 to present

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The Principia

Dean of Students

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San Francisco Theological Seminary

Adult Spirituality · San Anselmo, California

Pursued studies for a Doctor of Ministry degree

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Air War College in Residence

Class of 1994 · Leadership studies · National & global security · Strategic & future challenges · Montgomery, Alabama

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Boston University

Class of 1979 · Master of Divinity · Ministry in a Pluralistic Environment · BIBLE· Early Christianity · Boston, Massachusetts

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Video Published on Nov 15, 2016 – President Obama explains the dangers of Donald Trump’s “world view” by breaking down Trumps “US VS. THEM” Mentality.

 

Richard Davenport's Profile Photo
by Richard Davenport
11-16-2016
Shared with Permission
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This Veteran’s Day weekend fused a number of reflections for me in preparing the Gathering I led Sunday morning trying to respond to the congregation’s struggle with the election.

On Friday, President Obama was laying a wreath at Arlington and said “Whenever the world makes you cynical, whenever you doubt that courage and goodness and selflessness is possible, stop and look at a veteran.” Referring to the national elections that come just before Veteran’s day every four years, he said that an election “often lays bare disagreements across our nation, but the American instinct has never been to find isolation in opposite corners. It is to find strength in our common creed, to forge unity from our great diversity, to sustain that strength and unity even when it is hard.”

Turning to the Scriptures in Sunday morning’s Gathering we had the story of Jesus and the soldier (centurion) acted out from Matt 8:5-13. In a singular act that was unique in his public ministry, Jesus held up this soldier as a model of faith that he had not found among the Jews. And Jesus said this, of a man representing their oppressor Rome, to an audience of Jews.

What was it Jesus said awed him about the soldier? It was the soldier’s understanding that he was under authority, and that his life was not really his to live under his own volition. Jesus may have responded to that as he wasn’t a volunteer for the mission of the cross…he sweat blood in the Garden the night he was betrayed over an outcome he couldn’t change. He was obedient, but he understood in his prayer with God that his vote didn’t “win.” In fact the election phase of discussion was over and Jesus was left with how he would respond to a design he didn’t create or wish for.

So we are left with the mission of the election done, finished. But like the soldier in this picture returning from a deployment, if one mission is over another begins.

We may grieve or exult in the result of the mission that was the election season, but we all move forward to what can we bring to the mission before us. God has not left the field. God’s kingdom, empire, nation still is here and at hand. The next mission starts!

Note – One example of gracious response to the election, such as I and many are now advocating, was the Metropolitan Gay Men’s Choir cancelling their planned tour to China and Asia and deciding instead to tour parts of the U.S. they had not visited before. My sense was that this wasn’t going to be an “in your face” thing in deep red areas but a generous embrace of people who are afraid that they are losing “their” America. It sounded like this tour might serve to remove stereotypes and fears. Wonderful!

by Dick Davenport

Image result for the story of Jesus and the soldier (centurion) acted out from Matt 8:5-13.

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