When we see things in black and white it is often easier to see some of the detail more clearly. But we don't see the full picture.
This has struck me so often in the last week as we have heard over and over again of riots, rioters, looting, looters etc etc etc. There have been so many offers of "black-and-white" answers both with regard to the reasons for the disturbances and the way we should tackle the aftermath. Sitting at home is is easy to see a "one-dimensional" solution. And we have heard lots of black-and-white solutions which vary from the simplistic to the frankly obscene. But each of us has only a limited vision of the real situation, and, of course, the situation varies from place to place besides over time. We are only seeing "through a glass darkly" as the Bible puts it.
And so today I pray for all those individuals whose job it is to attempt to see the full picture and to come up with solutions - solutions in the plural because one size will not fit all. And I pray that those with different relevant experiences will be able to come together as a team to try to add the colour to the picture and to implement healing proposals to mend "broken Britain", so that we may once again learn to live as communities who value and care for each other and for our environment.
We have a lot to learn about Jesus' community of love and service. But Jesus' promise is that we can continually come to him for foregiveness and a new start.
Communities are not just about leaders, but about each one of us working with others. Placing the whole situation in God's hands may be a good starting point - and we can all contribute to that. But going around as peacemakers, acting out Jesus' life here on earth, we can each be visible in the healing process. We may not be able to see the full situation now. But we know one who does. Let's trust him to show us the way.
"For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known."
1 Corinthians 13:11-13