A week of hope

A consistent theme that I’ve heard from Obama fans is “hope” with expectations of positive change in our government. I would say expectations that verge on transforming this whole country. Critics of Obama supporters have levied the charge that they hold Messianic expectations from our President-elect.

Expectations are so high – from both supporters and critics – that President-elect Obama will face challenges unlike any other a President has faced. He seems to understand the magnitude of the challenge ahead. In his acceptance speech he acknowledged that his election alone does not achieve the change people so desperately want:”This victory alone is not the change we seek – it is only the chance for us to make that change. And that cannot happen if we go back to the way things were. It cannot happen without you.”

Our nation faces many challenges in the next few months as the government enters into transition. Our locale is often impacted by these transitions. The D.C. real estate market is unusually influenced by elections because there are an estimated 40,000 people moving into the city to take jobs – as well as 40,000 who will possibly lose their existing job based on election results.

Many Christians voted for Barak Obama, and many Christians did not vote for Barak Obama. Virginia played a key role in this race, and you can see that there is great diversity across our state, and even some diversity in our own county. Christians were not of one one mind on election day. But, we are united my someone much more important than any political figure: the Creator of this universe who displayed unconditional love through Jesus Christ and who gives us strength through the Holy Spirit.

Now that we have our election results what are we to do as Christians?

Pray for our leaders. “I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them. Pray this way for kings and all who are in authority so that we can live peaceful and quiet lives marked by godliness and dignity.” I Timothy 2:1-2

For some time I’ve had on my heart to pray for the safety of the Obama family. Maybe it comes from watching too much “24” (with plots revolving around assignations of african-american political figure figures) but never before have I felt compelled to pray for the safety of our President. I’ve always prayed for wisdom and discernment and will continue to do so.

In our President-elect we have a charismatic leader who has given hope to many who have been jaded about the political system. Tuesday night it was powerful to watch what was almost a religious experience for some. There was almost a liturgy during his speech! With the crowd responding “Yes we can!” as he spoke it reminded me of the call and response from a worship experience.
“He is risen!”

“He is risen indeed!”

Those are the words we use to start worship on Easter Sunday. The day when we celebrate our eternal hope – that resurrection defeats death, and we have found a way to life!

What a powerful worship experience it would be if we had a crowd respond with the same enthusiasm and hope for transformation as that crowd did in Chicago.

I pray for our country and for our leaders, but most of all I pray for the people of our nations who seek a true savior. May they find the hope that comes from resurrection and abundant life through Jesus Christ our Lord!


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