Ready, Set, Together
I feel wrung out. I sat, binging on Twitter and Snickers, watching the country to which my citizenship belongs reveal itself. I had not thought this outcome was possible. Surely, I thought, most people would not vote for a person so filled with blind ambition. I mean, both candidates displayed a certain ego-centricity, but...shouldn't being a sexual predator matter? Shouldn't that disqualify you from being president? Shouldn't inflaming racism in a wounded country matter? Shouldn't we reject a bully?
But we didn't. I cried until President-Elect Trump made his acceptance speech.
Then something happened.
I realized to stand by, shocked, is to embrace the delusion that I can hire out or elect my duty to love God and neighbor. Isn't this what has happened in Christianity? We hire a religious professional to go visit the sick for us, to pray for us, clothe the naked for us, and love the other for us. It is just as true that I cannot elect my cultural standards. People on both sides have been trying to sit on their couches, campaigning with their thumbs, while people suffer. People who will never be noticed by ANY elected official.
Here is the truth that I see on November 9. Our best option is to turn off the rhetoric, turn off the opinions, turn off the promises, and embrace our collective responsibility: to stand with the other and allow the other to stand with us.
Is this ok? Should we find "the good?" NO. No. Wrong is wrong and evil is evil, but grace demands that we reach out in our brokenness to love. To love the red and the blue. To love the gay and the straight and the unsure. To love the spiritual and the unspiritual. To love the black and the white. To love the rich and the poor.
Pay attention to what hurts right now. That is probably the area that could use you. Worried about refugees? Find one. Ask them to help you grieve. Worried about people of color? Give them whatever platform you have. Worried about women? Refuse to be silent.
A politician cannot replace you.