Friday, July 1, 2022

Give to God

Then the Pharisees went and plotted to entrap Jesus in what he said. So they sent their disciples to him, along with the Herodians, saying, “Teacher, we know that you are sincere, and teach the way of God in accordance with truth, and show deference to no one; for you do not regard people with partiality. Tell us, then, what you think. Is it lawful to pay taxes to the emperor, or not?” But Jesus, aware of their malice, said, “Why are you putting me to the test, you hypocrites? Show me the coin used for the tax.” And they brought him a denarius. Then he said to them, “Whose head is this, and whose title?” They answered, “The emperor’s.” Then he said to them, “Give therefore to the emperor the things that are the emperor’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” When they heard this, they were amazed; and they left him and went away. Matthew 22:15-22

Our US coins do not have one person alone pictured, instead, there are a plethora of presidents and important leaders, to signify our democracy. Our money tells a story of the good of many, instead of the good of one. That sense of democracy has been tested lately, and the divisions between faith and law have been eroded and confused. Jesus was straightforward in his answer when tested. "Give therefore to the emperor the things that are the emperor’s, and to God the things that are God’s." Our faith may guide us to forgo or abstain from participating in our common life, but we are never to use our faith to deny or destroy others. God is love and love is our way and our guide always.

Faithful Creator, center of the universe
we have been tangled in controversy
mired in the present worries and torments
yet you are the calm in the midst of the storm.
Help us to be faithful to you and community
give the the courage to never shun or withhold
let us be your love and light in this darkness. Amen.