This is a first. I am blogging between the two morning services at Crestview Baptist Church. I have just preached a sermon on the Great Commandment of Jesus using John 13:34 and 35. I also use two passages in 1 John. One subject that I did not include in my message for purposes of time, I will now address in this blog. I keep hearing the description of our nation as “deeply divided”. If we are deeply divided, it is not a political reality so much as it is a reality of the heart. If we could practice the teaching of Jesus to “love those who hate us and pray for those who despitefully use us and persecute us”, we could heal the animosity and vitriol. As things stand, we can barely have a civil conversation. This division is not really racial. This division is the age old division that was illustrated in Cain and Abel. On both sides racially and politically; there are people like Abel who love God and love others. They can disagree and still love and reach out in kindness. On both sides there are also people like Cain; people who have murder in their hearts. They are not motivated by love. The hateful rhetoric, the mindless violence, and the seething bitterness are not God’s way whether they come from the left or the right. When Lincoln spoke after the bloody Civil War in our nation’s history, he said “With malice toward none, with charity for all, with firmness in the right as God gives us to see the right. . .” Those days were infinitely worse than what we are facing today. Surely God can lead us to a place where malice is laid aside and love (charity) prevails.