Dear Church,

I didn’t sleep well last night. I tossed and turned all night long, wondering who was going to win the election to become the next President of the United States. As a matter of fact, I got up at 4:30 this morning because it was useless to try and fall back to sleep. I was worried. I was worried about a contested election. I was worried about the possibility for violence depending upon the outcome. There were a million scenarios running through my mind as I sat there in the dim light of my living room. You know the feeling, don’t you? It’s not a good place to be so early in the day.

Then a strange thing happened. As is often the case when I am worried about something, I try to think first and foremost as a follower of Jesus Christ. In the light of his Gospel, how should I respond to periods of anxiety and unrest in my life and also in our communal life. And it was exactly in that moment I remembered what Jesus said to so many people throughout his ministry, “Don’t be afraid”. I will talk in more detail about this on Sunday, but I want you to know that the most often repeated command in the whole of the Bible is…”Don’t be afraid”.

No matter who wins the election (and it appears we won’t know for a few days at least), we need to remember that we put our faith in Jesus Christ. His love sustains us and guides us forward in our lives. Even more than that we believe that his love is perfect, and as John tells us in his letter, “there is no fear in love, because perfect love casts out fear”.

So, my friends, I want you to remember one thing this morning. Don’t be afraid. Don’t be filled with anxiety. God is with us, guiding us into a future that is better than anything we could ever ask or imagine. Centering my day on that reality has already made all the difference in the world for me. I hope it can do the same for you.

I hope to see you on Sunday, either in person or online.

Grace and Peace,