January 20, 2017

Today is an historic day in our nation as we inaugurate our 45th President of the United States of America, Donald Trump. I know for some who are reading this, that is cause for celebration and hope. I know for others who are reading this, that is cause for concern and questions. There may even be some households where all of these feelings are represented under one roof.

As I was thinking about today I couldn’t help but think about Samuel and Susanna Wesley. Samuel and Susanna were the parents of John and Charles Wesley who would go on to start the Methodist movement. Samuel and Susanna lived at an interesting time in the history of England. There had been a lot of political turmoil for quite some time with power switching between various groups. Some supported Catholicism while others supported Protestantism. It really got nasty and bloody for a while.

It turns out that Samuel and Susanna held pretty similar political views on most topics. They were both supporters of the established church and were considered Tories. However, there was one major difference that they held. Samuel believed firmly that they should always pray for the monarch, whomever it was. Susanna, on the other hand, would refuse to say “amen” when Samuel would say these prayers at the dinner table if the monarch was someone she saw as invalid. In fact, Samuel wrote a letter to her at one point and even said “if we have different monarchs, we shall sleep in different beds” and he left their home in Epworth to go to London for an extended period of time.

It wasn’t until a new monarch, Anne, took power that they both liked that Samuel returned home and they reconciled their difference. It was within a year of that time that John Wesley was born. He was the “fruits of reconciliation” as they said.

Today, whether you voted for and support President Trump or not, I want to invite you to pray for our new president. If you can’t bring yourself to pray for him, at least be willing to say “amen” at the end of someone’s prayer who can. And if nothing else, don’t allow a difference of political opinion to drive you apart from those whom you love. Happy Casual Friday!