I have been watching tweets, posts and blogs throughout the day to see the response to the Election of Donald Trump as President-Elect yesterday. I spent 8 hours watching the election results from 7 pm (EST) last evening until I turned off the TV at 3 am, having never seen anything like this election and wanting to see the final results. It was fascinating to watch as those in the know were coming to the conclusion themselves that they knew nothing. Wow!
Today some are angry and some are gloating, which despite what others would think or say is nothing new the day after any election. There are those who are trying to figure out what happened, what this means going forward, and a hope that we can all come together and heal. Again… this is nothing new. Elections have been won and lost going on over 200+ years in this country, and each time after one I am amazed more and more that the Founders who wrote the Constitution figured out a system of government that would work in spite of who was in leadership or the political climate of the day. It is sheer brilliance.
However, we now live in a day where our thoughts are shaped more from the tweet or a sound-bite than from rational, developed thought; and we substitute hyperbole for facts then believe a narrative based on reactions to opinions rather than digging deep to find out the truth for ourselves. We not only name-call but we stereotype based on assumptions, and those assumptions do not come from the words that are said but from what we are told by others that those words mean. We lump entire segments of the population into categories not based on actual beliefs of the individual, but based on what other individuals who are “like them” believe. Then, in all of the vitriol, we blast any that might even remotely fit into one of those said categories as the source of the problem.
So, what do I do with what is before me… in the climate that I am in… in a world that is what it is and where everything will be taken out of context?
I love. I serve. I worship.
I am called to love everyone. It sounds grand, but for anyone who has actually tried there comes a realization that it is hard. People are hard. People are self-righteous, and it is the nature of all of us to be self-righteous right back at them. But I cannot, because that doesn’t look like love. I cannot name call, even when I have been on the receiving end of the same, because it doesn’t look like love. I cannot write a group off, or stand with boastful thoughts over them, or despise their existence because they came out on top, because none of that looks like love.
When the tweets are tweeted and the posts are posted and the memes are, well, you get the point… then I must stand before them and demonstrate the love of the Father who is in heaven, Who loved so much that He gave His best so they could be changed by love. I must walk into a room of those who my flesh does not like and from a genuine heart feel a love for them that would make me do whatever it takes for them to know that they are loved.
I am called to serve my world. Serving is easy until you are treated like a servant. My pride gets in the way, my sense of justice gets in the way, and my dreams and plans get in the way. When another can do for themselves but doesn’t I am still called to serve. When it is not my place or not in my schedule or when it is hard I am still called to serve. When I will get no accolades and when it will not advance my agenda I am still called to serve.
I must be willing to go to both those who have looked up to me and to those who have cursed me and take my towel and humbly wash the feet of the one before me. I must bend down to pick up the pieces, even when I was not the one responsible for the brokenness. I must find those that would be better because of my sacrifice and do whatever it takes to demonstrate a selfless spirit to give hope that there is still a servants heart in a sometimes selfish world.
I am called to worship my God. There are times when I don’t understand, and there are times when I seem to have all understanding. I can worship in both of these times. There are times when the tears flow, and others when the laughter is gut-wrenching. I can worship in both of those times as well. When I get my way and when I don’t, when I walk in bravery or cower in fear, when I nod my head in agreement and when I shake my head in disgust, I can still worship.
I learn to worship God not because of what He does but because of Who He Is! I sing the song that changes the earthly atmosphere to one where I sit in heavenly places. I can partner with Him to see His Will be done on earth as it is in heaven. I can understand that from both my position behind the pulpit and from my position as a dad, husband, citizen, and friend I find a place to worship. When the wisdom of the world is declaring the end, I can declare that God gives new beginnings. That is worship.
So, to add to the talk…
Love. Serve. Worship. That is my response.