Saturday, March 15, 2008

Senator Obama and Reverend Wright

I have watched the videos of Reverend Wright and do find them to be disturbing and sometimes racist. I sense a deep seated hatred of those that were abusive in the past being transferred to both the still guilty and the innocent because they are white.

The Lord's prayer asks God to forgive our trespasses as we forgive those that trespass against us. We are to love our enemies and pray for them. I wish Reverend Wright had remembered all that before he preached those sermons. Nevertheless, I do believe he follows Christ just as I do. Just like me, he does it with all his imperfections. We all fall short.

With all that said, I understand Senator Obama's dilemma. I helped start a church almost thirty years ago along with about twenty others. The man who was our pastor and took all the credit for starting the church was a brilliant preacher. His words brought me closer to Christ. He never said anything in the pulpit that offended general sensibilities, but he did challenge us.

Outside the pulpit, he said and wrote things that I found deeply offensive, things I did not believe, and that I did not want to be associated with. Some I called him on, some I was so appalled at that I thought best not to discuss it with him. Only once did I consider leaving the church. I did not because this church was not the pastor. The church was and is people who I love and trust, not because they are so perfect, but because they are not. They struggle to find their way in this world and to do it as Christ would have us act.

I did not leave the church because I also knew the man my pastor was. He was kind and generous, truly a person who would not deliberately hurt another. He loved God and loved his people. That his words were sometimes not as generous as his soul made me angry and sad. Angry because his words spoke of prejudice, sad because he could not see that.

So, I understand how Senator Obama could belong to a church where he did not believe as the pastor did. I think he is taking an unfair hit on this. Remember, I support Senator Clinton. I do find it a little disingenuous that he claims he did not know about his pastor's views. However, I can remember being shocked to learn some of my pastor's comments.

Senator Obama needs to refute directly all of his pastor's outrageous statements. He needs to distance himself from the words, but not the man. Politically, I don't know if he can do that. As a Christian, I know he can. In the end, to be President, he may have to dump his friend. How sad.
For a New York Times article on Senator Obama's comments on Reverend Wright click on the title.

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