Argonne Cross - Arlington National Cemetery - 2011

Following the results of this year’s Presidential elections, I’ve been feeling depressed off and on throughout the days since, and have been trying to determine the real cause.  Was it because my candidate did not win?  No, not exactly.  As a libertarian-minded conservative, I have been backing candidates this year with little to no chance of winning, so the results of the election were no surprise on that score.  The surprise was that Obama was reelected at all, after the economic and foreign events that have occurred, and the positions for which Obama has stood for in the last four years.

It seems amazing and unprecedented to me that America would choose him.  I’ve heard rumblings of voter fraud and intimidation, in favor of Obama, but I have no way I trust to verify or refute these.  I suspect there would be an equal number of cries of similar electoral shenanigans were the election to have gone in favor of Romney (indeed, even before noon on voting day, I saw articles about concerns for Republicans “stealing” Ohio).  America chose.  And what are we to make of this choice?  The choice was made in favor of increased debt, of further acceptance of abortions and gay marriages, of larger, nanny-state government, of class warfare and redistribution of wealth, and of socialized healthcare.

I’m so tired of the phrase “the lesser of two evils,” and frustrated that this has characterized the election choices of the last two cycles (or more, but I’ve only recently become politically aware enough to care).  Would Romney have been better?  I say marginally, but I’d rather see a completely different direction, instead of picking between flavors of statism.  Romney would have been a reprieve from the spiritual and economic collapse that seems impending, but only a temporary one at best.

So I’ve been grieving.  Grieving for the America we have lost – for the freedoms we have given away with our popular votes and for those taken bit by bit.  I grieve for the loss of Christian morals in our nation that no longer have a majority assent, however grudgingly given.  But I am late for the funeral; the Christian worldview as a dominant position has been dead for a while.  I am just now noticing that the corpse is dead, and no longer animated Weekend-At-Bernie’s-style.  As with grief, it hits me out of nowhere at various times of my day; as with depression, the brightest fall colors and bluest sky seem dim, like I am viewing them through an oily film.  But, also like grief, I can see a gradual lessening as my perspective begins to change.

This election is a wake-up call for Christians.  It’s no call to “take back America” – I submit it was never “ours.”  America is no theocracy, and we are best not to try to make it one; God got out of the human theocracy business when Israel crowned Saul king, and he won’t be back to take over until the end.  Besides, any human-led theocratic government could just as easily become Muslim theocracy, and that certainly isn’t desirable.  So what is this a call to?  It is a call for we Christians to arise from the laziness we are used to and be disciples and salt and light, instead of leaving it to our “Christian” presidents and our pastors and prominent ministry leaders .  I don’t think we can consider our duty done only with the few dollars we drop into the offering plate.

I feel the weight and urgency of the work we ought to be doing, but aren’t.  And by “we,” I mostly mean me.  But you, too.  There are organizations out doing the work that we need to involve ourselves in.  In fact, I feel rather overwhelmed and impotent in the face of it all.  We don’t have to go to Africa or Asia or the Middle East to do mission work.  America is part of the mission field, and there are real needs and issues that should be addressed, such as sex trafficking, abortion, homelessness and addictions of all sorts.  Relating the love of Christ to others through works of social justice is vital, but we must also couple the acts with the knowledge of God.  “Social justice without spiritual justice is not justice at all.” – Chris Hodges

Please Christian, open yourselves to big, specific dreams of ministry and teaching here in our country.  It may be that we are at an end to a chapter of American history.  If economic collapse occurs, it might even mean major political changes as well.  But if this is what it takes to get more of us awake and involved, then let it not be in vain.  Let’s show America something worth choosing.

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