There’s a scene in the Lord of the Rings, where the hero, Frodo Baggins, is in a very dark place. He and his friends are on a quest to destroy a magic ring. And yet, they’re being relentlessly hunted by hordes of evil creatures, and so their prospects looks dim.
At one point they pause to rest, and Frodo, exhausted and discouraged, says to his friend Gandalf. ‘I wish the ring had never come to me. I wish none of this had happened.’ And Gandalf responds, ‘So do all who live to see such times. But it is not for us to decide. All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.’
As you probably know, 10 days ago the Supreme Court of SC ruled that 29 churches of our diocese must give our property to the National Church—about 500 million dollars worth. And so while this ruling will certainly be appealed, a day may come when our staff will arrive at work and the locks will have been changed. This has happened in other churches around our country.
And so make no mistake, we’ve lost a major battle in this conflict. Some have used the imagery of the Exodus. We’ve left Egypt, we’ve come to the Red Sea, but now we can hear the chariots of Pharaoh behind us. And unless God intervenes in a mighty way, our future will be radically different than we thought.