Last week the Pew Research Center revealed there has been a dramatic increase in the number of Americans who claim no religious affiliation. I wonder if people want no part of Christianity because they see so few Christians willing to love if it requires some sacrifice from them.
This Sunday is Pentecost. We will look at how the early disciples were empowered to change the world. Before that could happen, though, they had to get unfrozen/unstuck. We, too, must let go of much of what we were told as kids and dare to grapple with what we really believe. It takes courage. Changing our minds requires that a bit of us dies. Letting go of self-serving beliefs can cause us grief; if it doesn’t those who still believe that way certainly will give us grief!
I read a Facebook post recently in which a young, white woman confessed that she had changed her mind about having white privilege. Like so many others, she had discounted the idea that just because she was white she had advantages in this country. What changed her mind was seeing how differently she was treated than an African-American woman whose only difference was skin color. She wrote, “I had never let myself admit that being white gave me an advantage. I work hard for what I have and where I’ve gotten. This week, though, I finally allowed myself to see the truth and admit my own prejudice. What gave me the courage to admit the truth was that the woman being treated as inferior was a friend.”
The moral of the movie Frozen is “an act of true love will thaw a frozen heart.” Perhaps changing our minds in a way that doesn’t benefit us is the act of true love we all need. Jesus said, “Greater love has no one than this: that you lay down your life for your friends. You are my friends.”
Perhaps what the whole world needs is a better, bigger definition of “friends.”