The writer of Ephesians says, “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.”

The call to be patient may have a negative effect on some people given their context. The call to be patient with injustice, abuse, and poverty will not be well received in communities where those realities are a daily part of life.

Others, who are activists, may see patience as a time of stagnation and inactivity. I don’t think this is what the writer has in mind with this call to patience.

Notice how the writer bases being patient on bearing with one another in love. One definition of bearing is to move while holding up and supporting (something or someone). This is a communal action that we participate in together.

In being patient and bearing with one another, the whole becomes greater than the sum of its parts. Thank God for the gift of such a community because there are times that I can’t pray, but you can pray for me. There are times that I can’t sing, but you can sing for me until I find my faith voice once more.

During this season of pandemic, political strife, and the search for social justice, what a remarkable gift God is offering us to give to one another.

In the midst of short tempers, quick judgments, and hurting criticism we have been blessed with an alternative – one that offers support, encouragement, and builds up the body if we will practice our faith…

“… be patient, bearing with one another in love.”

Thanks be to God.

Recommended Reading & Prayer Opportunities for November 3, 2020:

John Wesley on Voting and American Politics by Dr. Matt O’Reilly

Keeping it Together on Election Day with Nadia Bolz-Weber & Friends: This is an Instagram-live event with prayers at the top of every hour, beginning at 10:00 a.m. CST.

PCUSA Election Night Edition of Just Talk Live: “What would it look like to offer people a different election experience — a faith-based experience that comes at the election from a theological framework?” Watch election night coverage via Facebook beginning at 7:00 p.m. CST.