Like the most of the rest of the world, I bypassed January 20, 2017 attempting to pinch myself from the reality of the new American administration. I have still yet to refer to him to his newfound title, and I’m not sure when that’s going to happen. There is a sense of fear, in the absolute uncertainty of the imminent future, but also a sense of hope, knowing that change only comes from people who are restless in the cause they are fighting about. No, I did not cast my vote for Trump this year, and I still cry thinking about Hillary’s concession speech to the young people in urging them not to give up when I think about the years and efforts she’s dedicated to women and children’s rights, only for those groups of people to see their champion fail.
As a follower of Jesus and a more reformed Christian, there are things about the alternative administration that I disagree with, especially on certain social issues. I will admit some of those “advances” made in the last 8 years have made certain conversations harder for myself with the outside world, and even made me feel smaller about wanting to engage in certain conversations (and I would have to imagine that is the same for the people who are supporters of the incoming changes). Certain bills signed and passed by the Obama administration has forced me to come to be more aware of the fact that as a Christian, that there are certain fights that are inherently harder to engage in, but it leads me to the further understanding that we are not citizens of this world; we were never meant to make this place our home. Yet what I have appreciated the most about that past 8 years is the manner and grace in which Obama leads this nation. I’ve heard him say time and again that sometimes in order to move forward, you have to take a knee to your opposition. His heart, posture, and dedication to service is an embodiment of what it looks like to have a humble leader, and the rest of the world has taken notice.
But we can’t live in that utopia forever. Shifting from that kind of character in the last 8 years to….whatever this new one is…well I don’t know that I can yet put it into words, only time will tell. I have a hard time praying for wisdom and discernment for the new administration, feeling like whatever that is bestowed will be tossed away so quickly by the hardness and pride of the heart. I keep waiting for the day when all of this will be a distant memory in the past, but in the meantime I can’t help but think about how the next 4 years will shape and affect the developing generation. I can’t imagine that God is pleased with much of what has transpired (and will continue to), but I am encouraged to continue linking arms with those beside me, no matter our differences.
Let this year in future history books be marked with an asterisk as the year that saw hope triumph beyond despair.