A third Covid 19 wave is surging in the United States (where I live), and elsewhere. The world is crying … still. And in the US, on top of the surge, some of us are drowning in presidential election anxiety. I’ve voted in over eleven such elections. None of the others came close to the stress level of this one.
This morning while praying, I had a hard time wresting my mind off the election and focusing on God and Jesus. I then found myself thinking about the novel I published earlier this year—We Called Him Yeshua—just as the pandemic was sinking its teeth into the world. Great time for publishing a book, right? Well, this morning I wanted to see if the experiences of the characters in the story might give me clues for how to better respond to the convulsing world around me. It didn’t take long to find an answer.
In my mind, I slid back into that world, with the characters I had grown so close to as I’d recorded their stories. Again, I followed them as they followed Jesus on His final journey to Jerusalem. And again, I could see Jesus through their eyes, the eyes of those whom He healed and showed unconditional compassion. I felt their feelings, I relived their experiences, and like them, I briefly felt my eyes, mind, and heart drawn to Jesus. At times, all they saw was Jesus, all they knew was Jesus, and they where oblivious to the chaos going on around them.
My mind then rushed ahead over 2000 years (my thoughts tend to jump around a lot while waiting for the morning coffee to take hold). I was back in that restaurant kitchen, getting ready for the Sunday brunch rush. It was the morning after my second date with the young woman who later agreed to marry me. Only two dates and I was already crazy in love. And that Sunday morning, as I did the last-minute food prep, I couldn’t get my mind off her, nor the grin off my face.
All through the Sunday morning brunch storm, my co-workers wondered why I looked so happy. I didn’t get sucked into the brunch chaos, like they did. In the midst of that storm, I was a little island of peace, immersed in love for my new girlfriend.
So, how can that memory help me today? And what does it have to do with my detour back into the world of my novel? Though I crave that kind of love for Jesus, where I have to make an effort to pull my thoughts away from Him in order to focus on worldly stuff—well, I’ve rarely experienced it. But I believe in it. And even just that belief and memories of past experiences help me cope.
In the midst of the storms raging around me—the pandemic, the election—I want to be a little island of peace, held steady by my love for Jesus. And kept safe by His love for me. What makes that possible and real (not just wishful thinking), is His Holy Spirit who lives inside me, sharing this body with me.
Look, it’s easier to ride out a storm when we’re not alone. And when you accept the reality and presence of Jesus’ Spirit within you, you’re never alone. I’m doing it. You can too.
I wish for you today a day where you stay safe on your own island of peace and love, holding tight to the rock of Jesus.
How can a “Christian” call themselves a “Christian” if they support character and values that are non-Christian? Is this just another form of Christian hypocrisy, the hypocrisy we’re well-known for? The hypocrisy that’s just a part of our natural human nature that everyone suffers from in a variety of forms? But character matters.
I don’t get it. And maybe someone out there can help me understand. I just finished reading the New Testament in a week. Yes, I have plenty of time on my hands. I’ve read the NT many times, but this time I read it from the perspective of wanting to glean what it means to be a Christian. That is, according to the Bible, what is the true character of a Christian?
I didn’t learn anything new—there were no surprises. But the experience lit a fire under a question that’s been nagging me for a long time.
How? How can someone who’s a Christian, someone who accepts Jesus and the words in the New Testament, someone who at least tries to live up to the character description of a Christian—well, how can someone like that support a person whose character is the polar opposite of the Christian character? How can someone who calls themselves Christian support a person like Donald Trump?
I’d love to hear a better answer than the one I came up with. For I believe such a person is not really a Christian. You’ve heard of RINO’s, Republicans In Name Only? Well, it appears to me that this country has a bunch of CINO’s, Christians in name only.
I wonder what Jesus thinks of all this. And I’d really like to hear what you think.
Does the future of the United States look crazy to you? Is this presidential election cycle twisting your mind into knots?
If you are a Trump supporter, is your enthusiasm for Trump at least partly a reaction to how messed up the current political establishment is? Is this your way of screaming into the face of the establishment and saying, “I’m tired, and I don’t want to take it any more.”?
If you are anti-Trump, are you growing fearful that a person with his qualities might actually end up being president of the United States?
No matter what side you’re on, are you looking for an escape from your uneasy feelings? Are you looking for a way to cope with the craziness that seems to surround you?
All I can offer is what works for me. The world is a messed up place, and the mess comes from our natural human ego, selfishness, greed, etc. I’ll lump these terms and more into the plague that infects all humanity – pride. Natural human pride is the muck that messes up the world we live in. And the only way to cope with this mess is by looking away from the world, and focusing more on Jesus.
Pry your thoughts away from this crazy world, and instead peer deep inside yourself, down into your soul. That’s where the Holy Spirit of God and Jesus lives. The more you stare at the Spirit of Jesus within you, the more peace you will feel. And the messiness will fad away.
…YES, if the California “democratic” legislature has its way. According to a recent article in the local newspaper, California Democratic legislatures have submitted a brief to the state Supreme Court, requesting that Proposition 8 be “tossed out.”
The people voted, and the majority said they are in favor of Proposition 8. But apparently our elected officials do not want to pay attention to the majority. The majority votes, but the minority rules? Is that what democracy is all about? It may be mundane, but I decided to check the dictionary…
The Merriam-Webster online dictionary defines “democracy” as:
“a: government by the people ; especially : rule of the majority b: a government in which the supreme power is vested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through a system of representation usually involving periodically held free elections”
In California the election may be free, but the outcome is not. And this proposal to overturn Proposition 8 is not the first time California elected officials have ignored the democratic process and overruled the will of the majority. And it won’t be the last, I suspect.
Where is this headed? If elected officials can get away with ignoring the will of the majority, what is the point in voting? What’s happening to our civil rights?
Democracy is the foundation of our constitution. Many in the California legislature are in direct violation of our constitutional rights. In an effort to stir up some comments, try this on for size: to those in the California senate and congress who signed the brief requesting that the state Supreme Court overturn democracy, I say; you should be charged with treason!
On this blog, I normally try to stay away from politics, unless it’s a topic that is also directly related to Christianity in some way. But when I see democracy being threatened, I just cannot stay quiet. I hope you also feel the need to speak up. Our freedom is in jeopardy.