How wonderful and pleasant it is when brothers live together in harmony. Psalms 133:1 (New Living Translation)

This past week, Swann and I watched the movie Glory which was released in 1989. We had never seen it before, but it caught our attention as an offering from free streaming. For those unfamiliar with the movie, the plot follows Col. Robert Shaw as he takes command of the first all African-American regiment, the 54th Volunteer Massachusetts Infantry, during the Civil War. It is based on an inspiring true story.

Watching the movie got me reflecting back on this period in history.  I can’t imagine the uncertainty felt on both sides of the conflict as our nation divided and battled.  In some instances, brother rose up against brother, churches split, and politics became ugly.  Living so close to Gettysburg, I have many memories of playing “war” at Devil’s Den with my siblings. The actual horror of war never really entered our minds as we playfully battled at that historic site.

Our nation is again divided today as we enter a presidential election year.  Families are again pitted against each other and some churches once again ring with disagreement.  What are we to do?  Where do we find the harmony referenced in our verse today?

If Christian love is at the core of our being, can we not talk with others about our convictions?  If love drives the conversation, can we not freely express our opinions?  There are times when I feel the Holy Spirit guiding me away from engaging an individual in discussion; however, there are other times I feel compelled to speak my mind.

As we head into our celebration of Independence Day this week, with family picnics laden with conversation of all sorts, may we feel free to lovingly speak our minds.  May we also follow the wisdom of the guiding hand of the Holy Spirit. Some conversations are simply not worth having.

Blessings to each of you this week, as we celebrate the liberties we have in this magnificent country!

Diana Kongkeattikul