“Healing the divisions that separate us,” by Steven Salt has important lessons for us as we pray to heal the divisions in our community, country and the world. Steven’s blog was first published on September 14, 2016 on Cleveland.com.
No trespassing. Keep out. Violators will be …
Constructing borders and defending them seems an irresistible proclivity manifested on many levels. From national boundaries to backyard fences and even personal space, there is a strong impulse to establish lines of demarcation that separate us from each other for the purpose of safeguarding. There are consequences.
Territorial violations make the news everyday: illegal border crossings, mass immigration, international as well as personal property disputes, to name a few. The walls built to keep some in and others out are not confined to physical structures, but also ideated ones, less obvious but just as formidable. Barriers such as distrust, prejudice, indifference and hatred can seem more impenetrable than a barbed wire fence.
On the other hand, an instinctive drive to associate and unite with others impels us to connect. It is an interesting dichotomy: the desire to relate juxtaposed against fears that keep outsiders at arms length. Lifting the barricades that divide us along with the suspicions and angst they foster requires a rethink of accepted comfort zones and an acknowledgement of our native oneness.