Hope and Politics

November 4, 2010 by cloften  
Filed under Family and Parenting

As some of you know, I like to needle people who get overly caught up in politics.  The irony of that is that are likely few people that listen to more political talk or read more political websites than me.  I am fascinated by the theater of it and the way that people communicate.  Also, I am interested in the future of the county that I live in and I have a rooting interest in most elections.  I have a pretty eclectic hodgepodge of positions, some of which I don’t think any political party agrees with me on (That got you curious).

However, the way that some of us view our candidates/party/philosophy does trouble me at times. Despite what you may think, I am not that old.  However, I have already seen many “historic” elections that were going to change the foundation of politics, Washington and America for generations to come.

1994: The Republican Revolution led by Newt Gingrich which prompted one Bill Clinton to declare the era of big government to be over.

2000: Finally, a Republican president and Congress, no more meddling Democrats running around getting in the way.

2006: Huge Democrat sweep, repudiating Republicans forever.

2008: Barack Obama will finally bring hope to the US and the world and reshaping America to a country we can be proud of and a “filibuster proof” majority in the Senate that would allow progressive policies to bring compassion and reason back to the US.

2010: Which leads us to the most recent historic election. Where the people have declared once and for all…You get the point.

Here is my (rhetorical?) question: which one of those reshaped the political landscape (love that phrase. What does it mean?) for generations?  Which of those finally brought America “back”?

A couple of thoughts.  One, does it strike anyone else that maybe most of this is cyclical? The era of big government was not over. It came back, and now some are going to try and end it again.  Then it will come back.

Second, and this is my biggest question, when did Christians start putting their hope for a better future in the hands of people?  When did we believe that a reformed political system was what was going to bring hope and life to people?  I understand atheists, deists, pantheists needing to place their hope in people.  But Christian theists?  America can do better, worse or the same and the hope of the Christ follower should remain steady.  The things that matter the most still remain.

This economy has been challenging.  When you work for an organization that depends on people giving, it is a challenge.  When you have to sell your house because you are moving, it is challenging.  I did not put my hope and trust in Obama in 2008 and I don’t put it in John Boehner now.  I wish (different than hope) that all of them will do what is the best interest of the people and will lead us well.  However, it never surprises me when it doesn’t work out.  I want America to do well and thrive, and to be a responsible and moral country (even though there is not widespread agreement as to what that means).  However, I am neither surprised, angry, or overwhelmingly disappointed when it does not live up to its highest ideals.

Cynical? Maybe. Realist? Maybe. People will disappoint you. Power corrupts even the best of us.  That’s not “OK” in one sense, but in another it is–by that I mean I’m OK, my family is OK.  Why? Because our hope is in God.  Our leaders can and frequently do disappoint me.  God does not.

Romans 5

Peace and Hope

1 Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.


3 Responses to “Hope and Politics”
  1. Megan says:

    Thank you for this

  2. Scott Sutton says:

    Samuel 8
    Israel Asks for a King
    1 When Samuel grew old, he appointed his sons as Israel’s leaders. 2 The name of his firstborn was Joel and the name of his second was Abijah, and they served at Beersheba. 3 But his sons did not follow his ways. They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice.

    4 So all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah. 5 They said to him, “You are old, and your sons do not follow your ways; now appoint a king to lead us, such as all the other nations have.”

    6 But when they said, “Give us a king to lead us,” this displeased Samuel; so he prayed to the LORD. 7 And the LORD told him: “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king. 8 As they have done from the day I brought them up out of Egypt until this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are doing to you. 9 Now listen to them; but warn them solemnly and let them know what the king who will reign over them will claim as his rights.”

    10 Samuel told all the words of the LORD to the people who were asking him for a king. 11 He said, “This is what the king who will reign over you will claim as his rights: He will take your sons and make them serve with his chariots and horses, and they will run in front of his chariots. 12 Some he will assign to be commanders of thousands and commanders of fifties, and others to plow his ground and reap his harvest, and still others to make weapons of war and equipment for his chariots. 13 He will take your daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers. 14 He will take the best of your fields and vineyards and olive groves and give them to his attendants. 15 He will take a tenth of your grain and of your vintage and give it to his officials and attendants. 16 Your male and female servants and the best of your cattle and donkeys he will take for his own use. 17 He will take a tenth of your flocks, and you yourselves will become his slaves. 18 When that day comes, you will cry out for relief from the king you have chosen, but the LORD will not answer you in that day.”

    19 But the people refused to listen to Samuel. “No!” they said. “We want a king over us. 20 Then we will be like all the other nations, with a king to lead us and to go out before us and fight our battles.”

    21 When Samuel heard all that the people said, he repeated it before the LORD. 22 The LORD answered, “Listen to them and give them a king.”

  3. Aaron Reddin says:

    Well crap Charlie. Now I’m second-guessing all my votes from the other day…..


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