Common Ground on the Common Good

Living in the Spirit
November 21, 2017

Scripture Reading: Ezekiel 34:11-16, 20-24

Therefore, thus says the Lord God to them: I myself will judge between the fat sheep and the lean sheep. Because you pushed with flank and shoulder, and butted at all the weak animals with your horns until you scattered them far and wide, I will save my flock, and they shall no longer be ravaged; and I will judge between sheep and sheep.

 I will set up over them one shepherd, my servant David, and he shall feed them: he shall feed them and be their shepherd. And I, the Lord, will be their God, and my servant David shall be prince among them; I, the Lord, have spoken. –Ezekiel 34:20-24

Wow! What an amazing experience. I turned off the morning news after hearing reports of Congress dealing with the tax bill and read the above scripture for the day. In the news, one Senator* indicated he was a no vote on the bill because it favored large corporations over small businesses which he described essentially as the lifeblood of our economy. Others expressed concern about the tax bill increasing the national debt. Some recognize that health care would be markedly and negatively impacted by the legislation if passed that sounds like fat sheep vs. lean sheep to me.

We are all called to do justice, and followers of Christ are called to be the Body of Christ in the world today. Being a shepherd of all God’s people, and all people are God’s, is one of our tasks as doers of justice. Our representatives in Congress are ultimately responsible to us, not their financiers. We must recognize that we allowed big money to push us aside while distracting us and dividing us through highly emotional issues, changes in political financing through court intervention (Citizens United), and gerrymandering. We need to seek forgiveness for our complicity, primarily through sins of omission, and go about the business of correcting an unjust system.

Prayer: Lord, we do ask your forgiveness for shirking our duties as shepherds of your people through our civil failures. Guide us to work together to find common ground on the Common Good. Amen.

*Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin see at

All scriptures are quoted from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights are reserved.