Sisters and brothers, it has been a long, hot, turbulent summer. We have witnessed unrest and violence in every corner of our world, from Kenya to Syria, from Venezuela to North Korea and across the United States. The events of recent weeks have brought many of us to a moment of truth where we have felt like we must choose - and proclaim - where we stand in the midst of the chaos around us. The Presbyterian Church USA Belhar Confession states that,  "We believe that in following Christ the church must witness against all the powerful and privileged who selfishly seek their own interests and thus control and harm others." In this moment, that means that we are called to  confront racis m, hatred, fear, and division wherever we encounter it, even within our own selves. Wherever we stand at this moment in time, we are called to be the Church. We are called to care for one another, be with one another, pray for and with one another, not only for those we love, but for those we do not love. I pray that we hear this call, and live into it as the Spirit of God leads us.

This is our moment of truth. Now is our time to decide what God we serve. 
Now if you are unwilling to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your ancestors served in the region beyond the River or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you are living; but as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.
~ Joshua 24:15

~ Melanie Marsh Baum 

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