Given by Rev. Madison Shockley August 23, 2020

The words we use in our political discourse have implications in our religious life and the words we use in our religious life have political impact. According to our Constitution, the government cannot act on behalf on any one religion. It cannot support one church, faith, or religion over other religions. It cannot prohibit, denounce, exclude or destroy any particular faith or religion. It does not prohibit what a church, faith, or religion can do politically. This is often misconstrued by those who wish to keep the status quo. When the status quo crushes you, a church must have compassion and work to change that injustice. We say Black Lives Matter as a statement of faith. God cares about black lives. If the status quo is crushing black lives, then it is time for a change. We take our cue from Paul today. Reform. No. Revolution. No. Transformation. Yes. Paul was very political. His message was Jesus was the son of God, not the emperor. Just like then, people today are “crucified” in public for not supporting the government. Transformation is something that happen from the inside out. It allows you to be renewed until your true self emerges. We who are many are one body in God. That is the good news today!