I took pictures of the screen with my phone. Not because I was celebrating the outcome. Nor because I was mourning it. I took a picture because I understood that I was watching history. I was watching the end of an age and if I’m lucky, one day, I will be explaining this moment to my grandchildren.
I saw a country elated. I saw a country devastated. I saw announcers squirm, gawk and try to act like the redundancies they uttered served any purpose whatsoever. I am slightly proud to report that the home screen on my Facebook was utterly divided. People terrified. People relieved of terror. But I feel like I’m on a battlefield.
Does anyone actually want to understand?
Truth is not relative. But the highest truths teach us to honor each person’s right to determine truth for themselves. Yet, as a country we must decide some criteria on which we can operate and that means accounting for differing definitions or applications of what is right- what is good. That requires patience, meekness, confidence and a respect that I am terrified is gone.
Everyone is so sure that they are right.
Rightness… I’ve gotten sick with it before. When I am sure I’m right but I can’t prove it I will literally get queasy. My DNA sees things in black and white so for years I struggled to appreciate those who were able to view the narrow spectrum where the color changes. But age has a way of making you see that no matter how certain you are that there is a “RIGHT” you are more certain that you aren’t perceiving it in its entirety.
But it’s not about me tonight. Well… maybe it is. But it’s also about my friends and family. It’s also about the tears falling down my face because I see people who don’t know how to talk anymore. I’m less worried about one man or one woman in an office and more worried about a country that nearly killed each other on Facebook for the past year. And honestly, I’ve wondered if (no matter who won) there won’t be actual assassination attempts.
So much anger.
I find it interesting tonight that they cut short the one announcer who was actually going to say something relevant. I believe he was trying to make the point that everyone in this country feels like the unseen minority. We’ve pitted ourselves against each other and for one to gain ground it seems another must lose it. Furthermore, we have come to demonize those contrary to us. You can’t win as a society that way. We have to find better solutions.
We could gain more ground if we would acknowledge each other’s pain.
I’m not talking about being P.C. and not having hard conversations. I wish we’d say harder things but with much more kindness. And I wish we would get over the sting of hard words and look to see if there’s any tenderness in the eyes of the one saying it. It is love that makes our truth credible.
Without love, truth will make us tyrants and rebels.
I don’t know how to help my country tonight. I honestly don’t know if I can even help my limited number of friends on Facebook. I want to. I want to hope that there could be understanding. I want to do or say something so inspiring that it would cause a movement of understanding and healing. I want to believe that something other than further pain and division is coming down the road for this nation.
I’m not scared.
I’m not scared of my country falling apart. Ever empire that has ever been has fallen. Kings and nations are nothing in God’s hands. If not today, one day America will fall. It is the appointment of every kingdom save His own. But I am sad. I’m sad for people who are hurting tonight and scared. And I’m sad for those who are celebrating an election without the acceptance of their countrymen. I’m sad for people who voted with their backs against the wall instead of in the goodwill and confidence of those alleging to serve this country.
And so I’m lead to prayer…
You see. You ordered all days. And you know the pains and the fears of each person on this earth. You have held their hearts in your hands as you formed their inner man. This nation is nothing to you. Grass and chaff but each person here, each father, each mother, each child is of great value to you. Father, can I be so foolish and so bold as to ask that You would sweep over this country with understanding. Is it too simple to ask that you not leave us to our fate of accusation, division and fear. I cannot put my hope in the leaders of this country. I pray for them and I bless them but they are not healers. They are just people and they cannot speak to hearts the way you can. In the days and weeks to come would you grace the ears of my countrymen to hear with a renewed expectation. Would you grace our eyes to see in different shades than we have. Would you equip our hearts to recognize where we’ve fortified ourselves with our own rightness to the exclusion of all else. Somehow can you help the people of this nation recognize and change the patterns that are causing pain. I know that the days of this earth are numbered. I know that there will be trouble and that hate is the language of Prince of the Air. Yet, God! Bring your hand of reconciliation, that those who would have peace may find a place for it to rest. Help my friends. Help me know how to love people better. How to listen better. How to disagree better. Help us all to be honest with ourselves. More honest than we’ve been. And help us to hold onto greater truths before lesser ones. I don’t know what else to say LORD. You are sovereign and Your will is irrefutable. Still, I say. Mercy God. Show us mercy. Amen.