Reflections on January 6th

By Margorie Arnett

Photo from CNN News

Today as I watch this violent attempt to overthrow our government, I am filled with many different and troubling emotions. I am longing for an opportunity to be with other people, to hear words of challenge, comfort and hope, to share what is on our hearts and to hold each other, the nation and the world in the Light.

Some of what I am feeling right now is:

Horror. I am horrified that we have come to this … and that the President of the United States has actively encouraged a violent subverting of the lawful votes cast by the American people.

Fury. I am furious as I am filled with memories of standing on the courthouse steps 50 years ago armed only with signs that said “Stop the Killing.” And more recently standing on the corner with young black women, men and nonbinary children of God armed only with signs that said “Stop Killing Us.” Both times we were met with exponentially more force than was used to protect the Capitol building today. That this would happen the day after Kenosha prosecutors endorsed the shooting of Jacob Blake is not an unrelated event to what is happening in Washington right now.

FEAR. I am frightened that a crowd of maskless thousands is creating a superspreader event that will take even more lives.

HEARTSICK. I am heartsick that our national wounds are being laid bare so conspicuously  without a clear path forward for healing.

INEVITABILE. I am struck by the inevitability of what is happening today. The seeds of this insurrection have been sown for decades and even generations. We are seeing a deep wound brought to the surface today.

In Galatians Paul writes “you reap whatever you sow” … and that is clear today. Paul assures us that “God will not be mocked.” A sentence later he continues:

So let us not grow weary in doing what is right, for we will reap at harvest time, if we do not give up. So then, whenever we have an opportunity, let us work for the good of all.

I AM weary right now … and I imagine many others are as well. But… together we are strong. Together we will not grow weary in doing what is right.

That begins with us coming together in prayer and in love. In laying our lives, our hearts, our feelings on the table with honesty and integrity. Sharing together. Weeping together. Raging together. Sitting in stunned silence together. Holding each other and our country in the Light.  There is no wound so deep that love cannot heal. God who is love will not be mocked. 

(The author notes: “Attached is what I wrote on January 6 as the horror was unfolding in DC. Listening to the radio, watching television. Because of the pandemic feeling the pain alone.”)