After President Mubarak left Egypt, President Obama said it was “a historic event,” that “the Egyptian people had spoken and Egypt would never be the same”. Although the historic event worth noting for many was the revolution in general and the reality that President Mubarak was made to step down, the real historic event worth noting is how it happened. Let us pray that not only Egypt, but the world will never be the same.

That the protestors, even in their desperation for great change, chose a peaceful means by which to work for change was unbelievable in the midst of the great violence they had experienced for decades and in the midst of a world that too quickly resorts to violence. Often deprived of sleep and certainly with many experiencing growing anxiety in the midst of the uncertain situation at hand, millions of Egyptians exercised tremendous self-control, including the army caught in the middle. The sheer continued act of civil disobedience from growing numbers refusing to be violent changed their country and inspired the world. President Obama said that “the people of Egypt put to rest the lie that justice is best gained through violence. That it was nonviolence, moral force that bent the arc of history once more. We saw protesters chant, ‘Selmiyya, selmiyya’, (We are peaceful), again and again. We saw a military that would not fire bullets at the people they were sworn to protect. We saw people of faith praying together and chanting, ‘Muslims. Christians. We are one.’ And though we know that the strains between faiths still divide too many in this world and no single event will close that chasm immediately, these scenes remind us that we need not be defined by our differences. We can be defined by the common humanity that we share.”

A reporter said “the Egyptians bring out the idealism in you, in a world of cynicism”. For many of us, they bring out the faith in us; faith in the God who is always calling us to the best of ourselves, the things of peace, and who dances with us in streets everywhere, when we get it right. Long ago Jesus wept on a hillside wishing people knew the things that would make for peace. Perhaps last week Christ wept again, for there was powerful evidence in the world that people somewhere did know what made for peace, and found the courage to see it through.

May God continue to be with the Egyptian people in days ahead, as they continue their walk away from the Pharaoh, and toward the promise land. May their witness inspire and empower us all.
-With you on the journey, Pastor Erin

Taken from the Chimes newsletter, February 15, 2011.