Tearing Down Walls

In 1961, a ninety-six-mile-long wall was erected by the communist East German government to prevent residents of East Berlin from moving to West Berlin. The wall split families and friends for twenty-eight years and East German guards were ordered to shoot anybody who attempted to cross to West Berlin. Nearly one hundred people died trying to escape.

On Nov. 9, 1989, jubilant East and West Berliners began tearing down the Berlin Wall, a symbol of the Iron Curtain for 28 years. Tears of joy ran down the faces of loved ones as they freely embraced family members and friends, now free to move back and forth from the East to the West.

Yet, we continue to build walls and fences between us today. We fear the unknown. If someone doesn't think, act, or believe the way we do, we tend not to trust them, and we begin to build walls between us.

God loves all of us, for He created us in His image. His purpose for us, as believers, is to reach out to those who are not yet members of His family, and bring them in, rather than build walls to keep them out.

The Berlin Wall fell because the will of the people, the spirit of freedom, didn't give up. Liberty, the cry of every human heart, triumphed. People are still crying out for liberty, acceptance, forgiveness, and love. Isn't that the reason Jesus sacrificed Himself for us?

Ephesians 5:2 Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God. (NLT)

Today, will you build a wall between yourself and someone that you don't understand or will you reach out in love? In Christ, we are able.

Ephesians 4:31-32 Get rid of all bitterness, rage, anger, harsh words, and slander, as well as all types of evil behaviour. Instead, be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you. (NLT)

Prayer: Holy Spirit, inspire us to become a welcoming church to all people. Help us to stop labeling people and start looking through the eyes of Jesus at one another as beloved children of Yours. Help us to break down the walls that divide us. In Jesus' name, we ask. Amen.

Rosemary Hagedorn Penetanguishene, Ontario, Canada

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