I’m sure many of us have been mentally brewing the events of last week. And I’m positive that all who call themselves Christians are lamenting and/or justifying the President’s words.
I fall on the lament side…
For the past 4 years I’ve ignored his words. I absolutely couldn’t stand to listen to him, or watch him. He didn’t sound presidential, thoughtful or statesmanlike. In fact, many times I likened him to the drunk uncle sketch on SNL, (if you don’t know what that is, YouTube it).
Boy have I had to repent of that one!
As my oldest daughter said,
“Mom, that assumes that what the drunk uncle says is basically benign”
I blew off his words, choosing to focus more on what he’d done. I railed at the liberal side for picking on his every word. I blamed the media for taking his words out of context. I dismissed late night comics for making fun of him over his words.
Couldn’t they see he was simply a blatherer?!!!
I actually got angry about it, never really considering that his words were stirring up anger in people on his own side.
“Christian” people no less…
Battling words as a conservative is a party pastime. We’re good at picking apart what the other side is saying and attributing it to some kind of hatred that they have against ‘our’ side. Opinion pieces abound that dissect liberal/conservative words. Extrapolations are rampant about what they ‘truly’ mean. Radio talk shows interpret media words, predicting actions that may or may not happen, usually ones that cause worry and scare us.
After Wednesday’s events I had to come to grips with the fact that many people felt our President’s words were tacit approval for them to act in angry and violent ways. I was concerned that if the President won a 2nd term riots in the street would erupt. Never did I anticipate that if he lost a riot on the capitol would happen.
I finished my Bible in One Year app, now I’m deep into the book of James. I felt it was needed to help me understand a Christian’s response to how we should behave after ‘our’ side (written with trepidation) was defeated. What is a truly Christian response to loosing political power?
Here’s one that spoke…
James 1:19-20 “My dearest brothers and sisters, take this to heart: Be quick to listen, but slow to speak. And be slow to become angry, for human anger is never a legitimate tool to promote God’s righteous purpose.” TPT
Angry words lead to angry behavior…
James 3:5 “And so the tongue is a small part of the body yet it carries great power!” TPT
I think that for myself (and Bruce) the words we speak about politics lead to discouragement, defeatism and even despair. We feel that our political voice goes unheard. We feel our desire for less government, less abortion, and continued freedom, is continually thwarted politically. Listening to the angry conservative voices causes feelings of fear and resignation.
1Tim 1:8 “For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power and of love, and of a sound mind.” KJV
I revert to the KJV, it’s the only version that uses ‘sound mind’ at the end and at this point in history it’s appropriate. I’m seeing lovely, educated, high income Christians, believe some of the most amazing lies right now. It’s as if fear has driven them to loose their ‘sound minds’. They aren’t the typical Trumpist people portrayed by comics, media and the entertainment industry.
It breaks my heart…
Can I just go on record and say that this election was NOT stolen? Stealing an election isn’t easy. Multiple layers of checks are involved. Yes mistakes are made, but they usually don’t change the outcome and they didn’t in this one, as verified by several Trump appointed judges. (Sidebar, please don’t send links to the contrary, I won’t read them)
I’ll also go on record and say that Q Anon (and any extrapolation, version and tidbit) is a lie. Christians who are embracing this lie and spreading it are guilty of spreading falsehoods of the worst kind. It’s a sin to speak falsely of others. (Exodus 20:16)
And lastly, let me say that the Democrats are not our enemy. Yes, there are multiple examples of litigation that demonstrate that particular liberal agendas hate Christians. However, they aren’t the rule, they’re the exception. We need to stop anticipating that all Democrats are like the ones suing Christians in courts.
We live in a majority Democratic city. When we elect a Mayor, Republicans aren’t even on the ballot. Yet we have been graciously and warmly embraced by both Democratic Christians and non-Christians despite our party affiliation.
I’ve watched our married, lesbian Mayor stand next to our Pentecostal pastor and hand out food to needy families. I rent from a same sex couple and we have activist neighbors upstairs that I dearly enjoy. And half of our church are Democrats yet we serve together, peacefully and in love.
We are called to be salt and light, to shine in dark places and flavor the culture, not to dominate it.
Faith and politics are not equal yet we tend to link them to every aspect of our lives. I would venture a guess that many of us never actually experience political discrimination on a daily basis, (unless we invite it). Society today is predominately pluralistic and multi-cultural. It’s time to find new ways of living together peacefully.
As for myself, I’m listening to NPR, reading some people that speak truth in love yet don’t always agree with my long held ideals. And I’m praying that we find room in America for all of us.