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Faith Matters: A reflection/Thoughts for the future

Clive Staples Lewis (1898-1963) is known to many by his initials: C.S. Lewis.

C.S. Lewis is considered to be one of the most influential writers of the 20th century. He wrote many books including “Mere Christianity” and “A Grief Observed.” He was an intellectual giant in his chosen field of English Literature. As a British writer and lay theologian, he taught at Oxford and Cambridge Universities in England. Once, when faced with the inescapable, he recorded these words: “Each day we are becoming persons of splendid glory or people of unthinkable horror” (“Mere Christianity”).

I will leave the rest to you, the avid reader, as to the relevancy of these words for us today. The areas under consideration include personal family life, community involvement, the future of politics, economic struggles, social concerns, and the potential threats to a just and fair democratic way of life.

Hopefulness awaits our attention. The choice is clearly ours to make. Faith prompts us to seek understanding where doubt and misunderstanding thrive. Love encourages us to offer kindness, fairness, and respect as we walk with God and God’s people. God wants so much for us to see God’s face in all God’s children, throughout the Lord God’s global village.

In the Hebrew Bible, parts of which are sacred scripture to Christians, Jews, and Muslims alike, the Book of Deuteronomy (as part of the Pentateuch) records that the early Israelites had reached a crossroad, which threatened the future well-being of the nation. In Chapter 30, words attributed to the Hebrew patriarch Moses appeal to the people to “listen! I give you a choice between prosperity and disaster, between life and death” (vs. 15). His words were a plea for the nation to choose life, according to God’s understanding of love in life.

History records truth. Every great nation must confront (periodically) disturbances which seek to destroy the colorful mosaic of diversity assembled over past centuries. This is a Divine construct of the Almighty’s hand, entrusted to God’s people for the promotion of peace and harmony around the globe.

I sense time has brought us (as a nation among nations) to this moment of awareness, to a similar crossroad. It is decision time for each one of us. The choice is ours, as a nation, because it is, amongst many things, A Matter of Faith.

The Rev. Dr. Ronald E. Shellhamer, Retired Lutheran Pastor, Williamsport

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