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I’ve Dropped My Stone. Will You?

I’ve Dropped My Stone. Will You?

We’ve spent several weeks outlining a biblical blueprint to bridge the divides threatening to tear our nation apart.  With five months still remaining before the Presidential election, cracks are already evident in America’s foundation.  Imagine how fractured our society may be by election day without an intervention.  Only Jesus and His followers can offer a peace that surpasses understanding.  The question is, will Christians intervene to bring peace or continue contributing to division?

Fighting fire with fire cost Christians dearly in 2016 and 2020.  We’re still experiencing the backlash from lashing out at political “opponents” on social media.  Will we repeat that mistake in 2024 or drop the stone as Jesus commanded?  Demonizing “left” or “right” as if the election pits “good” versus “evil” is based on fallacies that fuel division.  Rather than loving our “enemies” unconditionally, Christians often justify throwing stones with excuses like, “our nation’s fate hangs in the balance” or “I’m taking a stand for what’s right”.

That narrative sounds spiritual, but politics is tricky.  No candidate, party, or policy perfectly represents or aligns with scripture.  Guilt by association is a natural consequence of living in a flawed, sinful world.  When politicians and parties professing faith fail to live it out, doors open to indict Christianity.  Of course we encourage civic engagement and heading to the ballot box in November.  However, the most impactful way for Christians and churches to engage in the political process in 2024 is to join the Drop The Stone Movement.

How Christians Could Drop The Stone…

Drop The Stone is a countercultural response to the growing divisiveness in America.  Its ultimate “call to action” is praying, caring, or sharing (about Jesus) to bless a neighbor, coworker, or complete stranger – and encouraging friends on social media to follow your lead.  However, there are many ways to get involved that would help spark the movement, progressing from easier levels of commitment and earlier stages of adoption to greater effort and advocacy:

Awareness

  1. Check out the website and read blog posts about Drop The Stone
  2. Watch this short video overview of Drop The Stone

Awakening

  1. Assent to taking the high road of reconciliation and forgiveness
  2. Praying a prayer of radical blessing for those throwing stones at Christians
  3. Study scripture to confirm the biblical grounding and urgency of Drop The Stone

Action

  1. Visit our Facebook page and share, like, and comment on Drop The Stone posts
  2. Join the Drop The Stone Facebook group and engage in the discussion
  3. Perform an act of kindness for someone across the political aisle
  4. Inspire others by posting your story on your social media channels with the hashtag #DropMyStone and challenge 5 friends to pay your kindness forward

Accountability

  1. Join our Steering Committee and participate as a leader on our Operations, Networking, Strategy, or Fundraising Subcommittee

Whatever part you decide to play in the Drop The Stone Movement, you’re casting an eternal vote whose impact will endure far longer than just the next four years.

How Churches Could Drop The Stone…

Pastors influence and bear some responsibility for how members handle political disagreements within the congregation and with non-believers.  Church leaders should be aware of those who throw stones by choosing anger over Agape, damaging the church’s witness and reputation.  They are tasked with educating and training disciples to be effective, not divisive, in their mission fields – workplaces, neighborhoods, families, and social media.

That being said, the reality is not every church will fully embrace Drop The Stone.  Therefore, we offer options for churches to choose varying levels of engagement:

Low Commitment

  1. As a staff, discuss Drop The Stone and evaluate its relevance by whether your church is diminishing or exacerbating division during this election cycle
  2. Pray for God to forgive your church and reveal Himself to your persecutors
  3. Tell other pastors and churches about Drop The Stone

Medium Commitment

  1. Show the Drop The Stone video at your Sunday service or share it with your church via social media
  2. Determine who in your community is most opposed to Christians (or to your church) and demonstrate God’s love for them in unexpected, creative ways
  3. Encourage redemptive acts of kindness by your members (and sharing their stories with the hashtag #DropMyStone) for those across political aisle

Significant Commitment

  1. Preach a sermon on Drop The Stone to encourage “confession through caring”
  2. Hold a Drop The Stone Sunday, maybe around the July 4th (politicized) holiday
  3. Cut a church service short, sending members out, equipped with training and/or tools to do specific acts of kindness (but not for church marketing)

Churches prioritizing numerical growth and retention will be less inclined to pursue the latter options.  The message of Drop The Stone, while biblical, is challenging – not attractional.  Most Christians are more concerned about the condition of our culture than the condition of the Church.  We typically prefer to bemoan the behavior of non-believers than our own.  Many would rather throw than drop stones.

Wrong Ways to Drop The Stone…

The Pharisees, when confronted with their sinfulness, reluctantly dropped their stones and clung to self-righteousness as they turned and walked away.  Defiant yet despondent over guilt (or a missed opportunity to throw a stone) is not a godly posture.  Our motive for dropping our stone should be genuine sorrow over personal sin, compassion for the lost, and grief over the judgmentalism of Christians.

Just as church “outreach” events should not double as marketing, we are also not to boast about our acts of kindness.  Jesus instructs us in Matthew 6:2-4 to “not let your left hand know what your right hand is doing”.  However, in that same sermon, in Matthew 5:16 Jesus says to “let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”  We believe Drop The Stone abides by the letter and spirit of both Mathew 5:16 and 6:2-4 because the objective of every story shared on social media is confession, not conceit.  Each post, if crafted with the intended heart, is an admission of prior condemnation and commitment to compassion from here forward.  While kindness always beats anger (whether we tell anyone about it or not), all #DropMyStone posts should convey humility.

It’s Your Turn…

How do and your church plan to get involved in Drop The Stone before Election Day?

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