Election Results 2016

To my Beloveds on the Day After Election 2016

To my sweet babies. You: who I held in your earliest days, whose preschool programs I applauded, whose elementary school presentations I attended, whose milestones I’ve celebrated. You:  who have cried in my arms, on my couch, and on my shoulder. You: who I have counseled, advised, guided. You who I have loved and who have loved me in return: Hear me.

This US election is not the solution to the world’s problems or the creation of them. This is neither the beginning, nor the end. This is a moment. An historic moment, a game-changing moment, a moment for rejoicing or weeping depending on your perspective. But beloveds, this is one out of many such moments in the history of our nation and of our world.

Are you listening? This is important.

Some of you are delighted with the results of last night’s election. Okay, that’s fine. But don’t be a braggart. Be gentle and be kind. It is not okay, no matter what the world tells you, to call people names, to boast in victory, to bully others with no regard for their feelings, interests, or even opinions.

Watch your language. (You know how I feel about this!) Despite what your government’s leaders may model, it is not right or good to use filthy language. Rise above it. If you feel like a winner today, use language becoming of royalty, not trash.

Finally, if you are claiming this victory as a victory for Christ, please remember that there are people who share your faith, but not your political beliefs. You can be happy about who won or about whom you defeated. This is one of the wonderful things about this nation: you have the unalienable right to your opinion. But this right comes from your citizenship in the United States; as a citizen of the Kingdom of God, you are called to adhere to the message of Christ who said it is the meek, the merciful, and the peacemakers who are blessed, not the boastful, the prideful, and the rude.

Are you devastated this morning? I’m so sorry. I wish I could make your pain go away by swaddling you tighter, by finding your lost lovey, or by binging on Ben & Jerry’s with you. I long for the days when your pain could be wiped off with a cool cloth and soothed by a band-aid. I know this is not one of those days.

I also know this: though you may grieve, you do not have to grieve as those who have no hope. If you feel this is a loss for the Kingdom of God, remember that God’s greatest strength was found on the cross; yet to the world, it looked like an irredeemable loss. This is not a defeat for God. It does look to many of us like a loss for our country, but no election can defeat God. Shoot, even death didn’t.

Now. Things will change because of this election. In all likelihood, you and I will need to become more involved as volunteers and as activists. We will need to take the initiative to protect our environment and to build bridges into relationships with people who are different from us. We need to listen, not just to people who share our opinions, but especially to those who do not. We must take steps to fight injustice and oppression wherever they are found. We must reach out to the strangers in our midst and we must care for the people on the fringes of society.

Here's what I think. I think that you can change this. Your innovative ideas, your unique way of thinking, your particular gifts, your awareness of others; all of these qualities empower you to bring about good and lasting change. Oft quoted American minister and reformer Theodore Parker (1810-1860) said

“I do not pretend to understand the moral universe; the arc is a long one, my eye reaches but little ways; I cannot calculate the curve and complete the figure by the experience of sight; I can divine it by conscience. And from what I see I am sure it bends towards justice.”*

No doubt, Theodore Parker was frustrated by the inequity of the moral universe; his participation in reform movements led him to fight for women’s rights, public education, and most fervently for the abolition of slavery. His efforts frequently came to little avail. Yet he had hope.

And so do you.

Rest in that hope. Rest in the confidence that love always, always wins. And when your strength is restored, move forward. Create beauty. Encourage conversation. Seek innovative solutions. Reach across boundaries into new relationships. In so doing, even if you didn’t see the results you wanted last night, you will most certainly get a glimpse of God’s Kingdom tomorrow.

*According to his Wikipedia bio, Parker lent words to Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address and most certainly to Martin Luther King Jr’s “Where Do we Go from Here” speech when King said, “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.”

About the Author Aileen Lawrimore

Aileen Mitchell Lawrimore is a mother x 3, wife x 28 (years not men), minister, speaker, writer, retreat leader, and lover of beagles and books. She has a lot to say.

Leave a Comment:

17 comments
Helen Foster says November 9, 2016

I love this!!! Thank you for sharing!

Reply
Cheryll Bennett says November 9, 2016

beautifully said

Reply
Cathy Lawdanski says November 10, 2016

Truth. On point. Best thing I've read on the election results. Thanks!

Reply
Hal says November 10, 2016

You have a beautiful perspective here that speaks to both sides of the isle and certainly to me.

Reply
Linda C Lindsey says November 10, 2016

I loved it!

Reply
Anonymous says November 11, 2016

I appreciate your words and your views but it is interesting to me that you address those whose candidate won the election to watch their mouths with vulgar language and hate when that is exactly what is spewing from the mouths of those whose candidate did not win. And on this Veterans Day, burning flags not against Trump but offending those who fought for their right to protest in the first place. The vigil held in downtown Asheville of peace is the way. Speak up in a respectful way on both sides.

Reply
    Aileen Lawrimore says November 11, 2016

    Thank you so much for your comment! (Ahh to have this level of civility in all differences of opinion during these days when it seems we can't blink without fighting.)
    You are absolutely correct. I wrote this Wednesday and since then have been alarmed and discouraged by the violence and vulgarity being spewed on BOTH sides. Reacting to the results by name calling, fits of rage, and destruction of property is damaging to the civil call for peace and the higher call for Peace that passes understanding.
    Thank you for calling me on this. May we all continue to seek ways to understand each other! Blessings!

    Reply
Sharon Mitchell says November 11, 2016

This was well said. We ALL needed to hear your words. And to be reminded that God is still in control, no matter how it looks. Thank you again.

Reply
Carole Boshart says November 11, 2016

You saw my post, and intrigued by the title of this post, I came to read yours. That happens with like minds! Shalom!

Reply
    Aileen Lawrimore says November 11, 2016

    Yes Carole, that is exactly what I thought when I read your piece. Thanks for visiting the blog. Peace of Christ to you.

    Reply
Otis Mallory says January 29, 2017

This is so powerful to put into perspective for both sides, the most important thing is the kingdom of God is at hand. So I will continue to Love all of God's children no matter what political side there on.Thank you for this well said message.

Reply
    Aileen Lawrimore says January 29, 2017

    Otis my friend! So great to hear from you! It is a troubling time, that's for sure. I continue to grieve our current situation as one who has hope, though; hoping that my actions will help bend that moral arc towards true, Kingdom-sized justice.

    Always grateful our paths crossed, Otis!

    By the way, feel free to share this post with others you feel would appreciate it or on social media.

    Reply
Add Your Reply

WordPress Backup