Thursday, November 15, 2012

Obama Won, and I'm Glad

Whaaaat?! Surely you can’t be serious.

I am being serious. And don’t call me Shirley.

Let me ‘splain. Put down the pitchforks and pom-poms.

How can a lifelong conservative Republican, precinct-walking Romney voter say she’s glad the other guy won?

I’m not glad that Obama won.

Butbutbut… you said--

I know what I said. Have a seat. This is going to take a while.

I’m not glad that we’ll continue to spend trillions of dollars we don’t have. I’m not glad that millions of people will continue to be unable to provide for their families without government involvement. I’m not glad that Obamacare will become a permanent part of our legislative landscape. And I admit, I was really hoping I could stop spending $800 a month on gasoline.

I’m not glad that the worst president of the modern era, possibly the worst president ever, was re-elected. As far as I can remember, the only three campaign promises he kept were killing bin Laden, increasing energy prices, and fundamentally transforming America. The last one makes me truly sad. America’s emptiest suit, so very full of himself, gets four more years to remake our republic in his own image.

There’s been a whole lot of “How could this happen?” on the Right over the past week. I’ve seen a lot of articles and blog posts from people scratching their heads about this election. Simply put, Obama won because a majority of voters wanted what he was offering – twice. We are a fundamentally different country now. I’m not convinced our current populace would have elected Ronald Reagan, were he running in 2012 instead of 1980. Obama won because he fits our times.

On November 6, 2012, we saw that the America we knew is terminally ill. The America that drew my mother here from El Salvador, that made my father proud, handed itself its own death sentence. Now it’s just a matter of watching the life drain out of Uncle Sam’s face.

America. It was nice while it lasted. The Second Coming feels a whole lot closer than it did ten days ago.

Wow. Exaggerate much?

Not really. Especially now that Hamas is going to war with Israel. We weren’t the only ones watching the outcome of this election, you know. Anyway…

A lot of people are resisting this characterization of our plight, because they’ve been feeling this anxiety for years now, and they don’t want to succumb to crushing despair. Others accept both the description and the despair. I accept the description and reject the despair. I can do that only because I know how the story ends, and I know the Author.

Americans have been living off the moral capital of prior generations for quite a while now. It turns out pretty well for a society when millions of people try to behave according to biblical principles, even though most of them aren’t true followers of Christ. But since our culture is running away from those ideas as fast as it can, that moral capital is all but gone. Not only does the average American reject biblical truths, he is ignorant of the source of what he denies. These days the “Second Coming” could be a topic for a segment of “Jaywalking.”And the effects of that are appearing seemingly everywhere at once.

From “he who will not work, let him also not eat” to the modern welfare state.

And I haven’t even brought up marriage or abortion.

So what happens now?

From a boots-on-the-ground perspective, I think things will continue much as they have been, even when our fiscal chickens come home to roost. (You thought “The Birds” was scary? Take cover, gang.) The national elections may still go back and forth between Democrats and Republicans. There will be conservative legislative victories from time to time.

Oh, who are you kidding? A congressional Republican is all brain and no spine, and a congressional Democrat is the opposite.

Too true. But you never know.

Looking at this election from the Felix Baumgartner perspective, it’s obvious to me why Obama won. God chose it.

Oh, puh-leeze…

If you doubt me on this, I have two words for you: Hurricane Sandy.

Some people are calling it luck or karma. No. There is nothing random about this. What are the odds that on the eve of a major presidential election, which the least worthy incumbent in our lifetimes seems about to lose, a hugely destructive hurricane hits the Eastern seaboard, giving the president an opportunity for a “Mission Accomplished” photo op with a Republican governor, and stalling the momentum of the challenger? What are the odds?

On November 6, 2012, we saw God put His hand on a piece of the game board of human history. He is moving America out of its place of prominence, and He is doing it through Barack Obama. Why? He has something very,very big in mind, and America has always been only a part of His plan, not the plan itself.

There’s no shortage of political lessons being offered for conservatives and the GOP – some good, some bad, and some ugly. And despite everything I've said, I don't think the political solution is to go silent and to withdraw. But the spiritual lessons God is offering Christians are the same as they’ve always been, and they’re exactly what we need to hear.

God is always in the business of showing us that we need Him daily, that apart from Him we can’t do anything, but that we can do everything through Christ who strengthens us. Unfortunately, we are so thick-headed and easily distracted that we forget Him when times are easy. It’s during the hard times when we finally remember to look to Him for our satisfaction and peace of mind, because the world shows us that it’s incapable of giving us what we need most. And one thing is clear – the trials we’ve been enduring will continue or even increase. The Apostle Paul admonished his readers to “make the most of the time, for the days are evil.” In the coming days there will be more elderly, more sick, more jobless – more opportunities to serve others, to be light in dark places.

And our trials won’t be merely physical or material. Between the culture’s rejection of Christ and the current administration’s hostility toward religious freedom, it is going to become costly to be a Christian. Indeed, it’s already happening. In a country settled by people seeking freedom to live for Christ, my future will likely find me a transgressor of the law for doing just that.

But I can be glad, regardless of my circumstances. As the old hymn says, “Because He lives, I can face tomorrow/ Because He lives, all fear is gone/ Because I know He holds the future/ And life is worth the living/ Just because He lives.”

I’m glad to be reminded that we – I – have been deluded into trying to make heaven out of this hopelessly twisted, temporary, dying world, while my true, permanent, perfect home awaits. God help me use every opportunity to demonstrate forever-home living to this FEMA-tent world.

No comments: