As the number of people who attend church declines in the U.S. and Europe, there seems to be more interest in the bible and how scriptures are viewed and interpreted through the lens of those currently in the White House. The Bible a sacred text for some and a crafty oppressive weapon for others is now on the front lines as immigrants' families are being separated from their children. The U.S. has a sorted history. The roots of hate, greed, oppression, thievery, and power run deep but somehow someway I believe those defected roots were watered with the blood and tears from our ancestors while God provided his sunshine in the form of grace giving us fruit in the form of leaders and warriors for social, economic, and spiritual change. To embody and fully understand our motto, In God We Trust, we must look at the intent. In 1861, Reverend Watkinson petitioned the Treasury Department to add a statement recognizing God in some form of our coins. Why? Well, part of the motivation was to show the world that God was on the union's side during the Civil War. Yes, our self-proclaimed Christian nation used God to send a message to those they were in conflict with. The message was powerful, subliminal, and impactful on so many levels. A historical reflection of tying faith and politics together to touch the depths of the human soul whether it be in an effort to elevate or oppress. Trust is ultimately about surrender. Yes, surrounding our will for God's will. There's an element of acceptance I do not see in our current political climate that is carelessly using biblical scriptures for political positioning.
For my generation, we are in the midst of history literally repeating itself during modern times. We are the descendants and fruit of the blood and tears as well as witnesses to a historical remix as we experience and view the rotting roots of this nation on our big screens, mobile devices, and internet feeds in real time.
Slavery and its history in the U.S. will be debated for years as some try to rewrite what actually happened but one thing is clear. Slavery was about money and power and so is the case with immigration. Ripping families apart is nothing new for the U.S. No matter the reason whether justified through policy or sacred text humanity is in question here just like it was years ago. Children, safety, and morality are in the crosshairs of American politics and in the end, we must decide which side of history will we stand on. For many, God is defined by his character and by scripture but in the end, the question will be how do you see your brother or sister through the eyes of faith using the lens of politics, angled directly at the heart of humanity.
Don't be distracted by politically cherry-picked scriptures or fancy commentary. We must hold our government, it's officials, and even those in the highest office accountable, resisting the ploys and tactics to appeal to our faith and spiritual selves, in an effort to water rotten roots instead of pulling them up and exposing the ugliness of it all. In God We Trust is a beautiful sentiment that I hope one day will ring true for the U.S. in word and deed.