∼The Middle of the Garden∼

My experiences from walking and talking with Jesus in the middle of life's garden…a blog by Janet Williams

Revelation 14:6 “Then I saw another angel flying in midair, with an eternal Gospel (good news) to tell to the inhabitants of the earth, to every race and tribe and language and people.” AMP

Anyone who has listened to political candidates who are campaigning for office can see the difference between the way a candidate who is Republican sees the world and one who is a Democrat.

It becomes obvious in their tone, demeanor and promises. At times, the Republican candidates appear too hard nosed. They appear too rigid and lacking in a kind of grace or mercy. They appear to have less compassion for the poor, needy and downtrodden and more interest in the economy than the Democratic candidates.

The Democratic candidates, however, seem more interested in social justice, the poor, needy and downtrodden but less interested in the economy than the Republican candidates. So, round and round we go. Voters are left with two good candidates but question whether there is really a good President between the two.

I think that I see the core difference between the two parties as being a core difference in the world view which each individual holds. Some people see the world through the eyes of the victim and some see the world through the eyes of the victor. Some see the world through the lens of money and some see the world through the eyes of justice. The list goes on and on.

I think I see this as being a truth that also holds for various groups and communities in America as well. I think there are many people who attend a specific church because of the world view that it encourages.

For example, I saw on the news there is a church in Webster Groves, MO, that is now demonstrating along main street of downtown Webster Groves. They are protesting the injustice of George Floyd’s death. They appeared to be doing so respectfully and the group appeared to be almost all white. The female Pastor stated that they would continue to protest until they saw things change. I have not heard that the Webster Groves police are treating black people unfairly so I don’t know why they are protesting in Webster Groves except that is where their church is located. Webster Groves is a community that is mostly white, so maybe they are trying to reach out to the people they feel need the most change as far as their opinions on the “black lives matter” campaign.

But, I think that I also see this as a fundamental difference between communities that are predominantly white and the ones that are predominantly black. I see the white communities as ones that are seclusive. Individual families are standoffish from their neighbors to a far greater degree than the black communities. They appear (to me) as seeing their world as what affects them and they don’t venture out beyond the borders of their community too much.

The black communities appear (again, to me) to be a people who are much more connected to the others in their neighborhoods. They are more socially oriented. They have a need to be connected with others and are far less standoffish than I see the white communities. But, they are also held sway by those connections. At times, the emotional appears to override the rational and moral. They appear to make decisions based on their heart rather than their head. This is why (I think) they will support a neighbor or friend who is in trouble because they know that if they get in trouble they want that friend to support them. While these bonds with others are a great comfort and help in times of need they are also the chains that bind them too. I also think that there is an attitude in the black community that believes that if a person is not a part of their world and is not joined in common likes, dislikes, attitudes and hatreds that they are perceived as being an enemy. So, the white people have become their enemy.

This has probably been one of the reasons that there is such a bitter hatred of Americans by those in Muslim, middle eastern countries. They have a very different world view than Americans. They perceive Americans as standoffish and aloof. They perceive Americans as feeling superior. They think Americans look down on them as being primal and backwards. But, here again, they appear to be a people who are entrenched very deeply into community. Unless you live with them, fight with them, and agree with their world view then you are considered an enemy.

Many cults and extreme religions have this view as well. Scientology appears to be one of them. That unless you are an active Scientologist and living among them, abiding by their rules you are considered a “suppressive person” and are to be shunned. You are an enemy of Scientology and an outsider. You have to buy, abide by and tout the entire lifestyle package that Scientology offers or you are pushed out.

I was once in a church that wanted me to sign a lifetime covenant with them. Yes, a LIFETIME covenant (or contract). When I balked and refused I was denied communion and left out of special meetings. They were trying to put pressure on me to conform to the will of the group. If I had been a needy person, I would have caved and submitted even though I had misgivings about signing their “covenant”. As it turned out I left and the church disbanded about a year later. I’ve wondered what they did with those signed lifetime covenant contracts? I mean, they broke their own covenant vows. The very thing that I was persecuted for became the very thing that they broke. I was deemed too independent which I later thought meant I wasn’t willing to go against what I felt to be right for me and do what felt right to the church. Or, maybe, a lot of others didn’t feel it was right either but just never came out and stated it to the Pastor.

I think that in hindsight I can look at the Pastor who was trying to force me into this kooky covenant and recognize that his core, most fundamental belief that guided his life was not compatible with mine. His primary core world view was against and contradictory to mine. My perception of him changed from being an open, caring Christian man to one of being overbearing, manipulative and self serving. I think he got caught up in the idea that he was going to be a “somebody” in this new church denomination and in order to become a “somebody” he had to keep me (and everyone else) under his dominating control. I was in his way.

Over the years, I have been confronted with my own world view. I have had to examine what is my core, first, primary world view and is that really working for me? I have been challenged by God on numerous occasions to take a good hard look at myself in a mirror of truth that He holds up to my face every once in a while. I see where I am off and that stings. I see how far I have to come but I also see that He has promised to stick by me and support me through any changes that need to be made. It is a lifelong, slow process. My time with that church (I mentioned above) is one of these times. It was hard but the experience helped me define who I am and what I want to be. It helped me define my weak areas that led me to falling for such nonsense and becoming prey to them in the first place.

So, this is a long blog post and what is my point? My point is that in order to change the way the police treat the black citizens can only change when each police officer examines their own life and heart and works to make that change. But, the desire to make that change will not come from another person (or group) trying to force that change on them. The “black lives matter” movement appears to be close to a finger pointing crusade. It doesn’t appear to have the comprehension or understanding that in order to change how the police (or white people in general) perceive and interact with the black people requires that black people change their own core world view as well. It appears to be a movement that is stating that the problem is “out there”. It is out in the world without any recognition that it is also an internal problem. It is only when each individual ON BOTH SIDES of the “black lives matter” problem examine their own world view and change it into agreeing values that true change in the world will come.

Changing my world view to align with Jesus’ world view has been the main struggle and focus of my life in Christ. I have committed myself to Him and I must change me to become more like Him in every way. I have made this choice because I believe that only true and lasting change will come from abiding in Christ, abiding in His word, denying myself my rights and taking up my cross and following Him.

God made us all colors and He expects us to live in peace on this one planet we call, Earth. We are failing at that and the only way He has destined for us to succeed is through His Son, Jesus.

That is the world view that I now have.





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