The US elections are here, my prayer is for God to preserve the precious soul of the country.
I am not American, but I have spent 12 years living in America in three blocks of 3 to 4 years. While I was in grade school in California, then university in New York, and then working as a business analyst in Nashville. I spent the rest of my life in Asia. Because of this, I realized many things about America that some Americans don’t realize because they have always stayed in America and hence don’t realize what they have because they have nothing to compare it with.
There is a spirit in America that is intangible but very real.
I know that America made me believe that if I worked hard, I could accomplish big things. You’ll be surprised that in some other countries, although people say that, they don’t really believe it because of a lack of opportunities that they don’t realize.
I know America helped made me believe that even if the situation looks impossible, there can be a creative solution and that help could come from unlikely places.
I know America helped made me believe that every human is important.I know America helped made me more charitable. Because of the abundance in America (compared to some other places), and because I was surrounded by giving-people, I became more generous, compared to the “all for ourselves” mentality of some other countries.
Of course, there are bad things going on in America too. Polarizing mass media. People incited to riots. Hollywood pushing perversions (remember Cuties from Netflix?) Politicians enriching themselves because they sell out the country for their own gain because they don’t have any real objective values. There are also various degrees of racism, and people feeling trapped. I see all of these.
But when I look deeper into everything, I realize many of the most beautiful things about America stems from it’s Judeo-Christian heritage. Not taking about draconian rules, but an underlying belief. This belief in a loving God, loving your enemies, being humble under God which allows us to hope even in despair allowed the foundations for everything else to prosper… including democracy, free market, and the crafting and adherence to the constitution. Not everyone can perfectly adhere to those beliefs, but once you have a critical mass core of people that want to adhere to them, great things happen… umbrella effects can spread.
It was from here that stems forth hope that is intangible. If you don’t believe me, if you go to some particular other countries you will feel the spirit is very different. Some places seem normal on the outside, but there is an emptiness. Some places has more of a lack of meaning. Some places are more darwinistic. People might be less kind. People have less trust in each other and the government.
There is a reason why more people want to migrate to the USA than migrate out.
At this point, half the country believes VP Biden will heal the tension within the US, attributing Trump as an enabler of racism while many others are nervous/afraid there is corruption within the democracy (mail-in voter fraud etc). To them, Trump had America’s best at heart. He wasn’t racist – he was exposing media corruption and hate, and was not the cause of it.
So who is right? Perhaps the better question is who is on the throne.
What is my prayer when we are living in times that people are all exposed to partial narratives feeding their pre-inclinations? In such a climate, many a times, we cannot see things from other people’s point of view. When we are people cannot see each other’s point of view and freely discuss, that’s when puppet masters win. Narratives can easily be crafted. Real and fake news can both easily be throttled.
The Bible says in the end times, people will claim thinking themselves smart (Rev 20:10, Dan 12:4), but also call evil good and good evil. (Isaiah 5:20) Isn’t this what is happening now? One side openly calls the other “evil”. The other side calls the other “ignorant”. The exact truth seems so hard to fathom, when knowledge is curated by institutions, and narratives are crafted daily by modern day pied pipers.
What good can come out of this darkness?
Yet the Bible flips everything on it’s head again. As we approach the end days, the Bible also promises that as the world gets darker and darker, the children of God will shine brighter and brighter. (Isaiah 60).
Just like there is a New Testament to the Old Testament, God always gives us historical examples to give us faith for a future hope.
In AD 64 the emperor Nero burned down a large portion of Rome so he could rebuild the city in his own glory, but he needed a scapegoat so he blamed and arrested the Christians. Some were dressed in animal skins and eaten alive by wild dogs. Others were tied to posts and set on fire as torches to provide light for the palace parties at night.
The emperors who followed did likewise, attempting to kill the growing movement of “peculiar people with no allegiance to the empire.” The persecution was so severe that Roman citizens who despised Christians actually began to pity them.In the face of such cruelty, Christianity grew from 5,000 to 5 million Christians between AD 40 to AD 300 because you cannot kill the church or the hope of the gospel message. Eyewitnesses watching Christians be burned alive claimed, “The fire of their savage executioners appeared cool to them because they fixed their eyes on their escape from the eternal unquenchable fire and the good things promised to those who endure.”
Nero, with all the power of propaganda, crafted the narrative in order to do further his own selfish ego and goals. Yet, what was meant to destroy and demoralized the Christian faith rebounded strongly with God’s obvious help.
It has happened before. It will happen again.
This remnant of the Christian faith of hope in darkness is what I believed I experienced as a young kid.
So, my prayer for this coming election is for God to uphold the candidate that will be truly committed to preserving those values that gave even someone like me great hope and the courage to love, give and succeed even when the world was against me. I would never have recovered from 30-years of incurable eczema and resurrected my career without this since doctors and career folks counted me out. I would never have been so giving after having so much taken from me.I hope to see more family values, sons and daughters loving their parents and vice-versa, the spirit of working harder for ourselves and also for the fellow man, the foundation to grow deep moral courage, the yearning to know the God that created us and so fulfill our purpose on Earth, the intellect to search for the intangibles that make us flourish as human beings, the favor to receive unexpected help to accomplish the impossible, and in pursuing all those things, realize that those things are all found in Christ.
And, no matter who is President, know that in-Christ, all things are possible. Truth can come to light in the darkest night. The hearts of kings can be changed. God can prepare a table in the midst of your enemies. (Psalm 23)
Because I believe in heaven, I believe that there will be ultimate justice. Those who are truly racist will be punished. Those who have been truly lying to the American public for their own gains will be punished. If not in this life, then in the next.
To those “elites” who behave as though they are above the law and that with enough manipulation, money and influence you can get with anything. You won’t. Remember just how vulnerable we as humans really are, and that we should be pondering the afterlife more than this life itself.
“What will be benefit you to gain the whole world but lose your soul?” Jesus said 2000 years ago. We will always remember His words, your words will not be remembered.
God bless America.