“It’s time we all recognize that the time for serving flags is gone.”
That’s what an old college friend of mine said in relation to the frenzy around the Electoral College voting last week.
He is American. He has been a chaplain in the U.S. military and his comments remind me how strongly patriotism and Christianity are intertwined in the U.S.
It was startling to me because serving any flag has never entered my mind. I sing the anthem, I pray for our country, but I cannot relate to such language.
This interchange reminded me of a few important items: the first is to guard against judging that about which I know so little. I find it irritating when Canadians state emphatic opinions on what is going on in the U.S. The bible is clear in reminding us not to ‘judge others lest we be judged.’ It is the bible that teaches not to worry about the sliver in someone else’s eye when there is a log beam in your own. If we must share opinions on U.S. politics, let us be humble enough to do so with care and kindness and steer clear of arrogance.
I am also reminded that Christians are citizens of two kingdoms. We have a queen in England for Canada and we have a Lord in heaven for the Church. I have never doubted that I am first and foremost a child of God and a citizen of heaven. This dual citizenship means that I do not have to be anxious over what happens here because the greater kingdom is unshakeable.
My friend’s first statement rattled me a little, but his next statement was something with which I readily resonated. He said, “We serve the Cross, and the God who died on that cross for us, and rose again, and is coming again…soon.” To which I might add the words of John, the beloved, “Even so Lord Jesus, come quickly!”