One Nation Under God

I recently spoke before a Christian writers group at a church in Pennsylvania and after my presentation, over refreshments, several of us gathered and talked about the upcoming U.S. presidential election, which of course is now tomorrow. (Where did the time…the year…go?) One said he feared there will be another civil war soon, no matter who wins. Another said she might move out of the country if her candidate doesn’t win. But to where, we asked?

Acceptance
After reflecting on all of this, I realize that what we will all need, no matter who wins, no matter what happens, is a continued spirit of faith that God has a plan, God is in charge, and we will hopefully remain “one nation under God” as we say in the “Pledge of Allegiance.” That means acceptance and tolerance of the outcome and each other, and that we all pull together after this contentious battle is over to work toward peace, prosperity, unity and of course liberty and justice for all.

Faith Over Fear
It is tough to place faith over fear, especially with a looming election, especially in a pandemic where everything is uncertain…but the Lord tells us that’s exactly what we need to do. Jesus didn’t preach about rioting and violent protesting but about being peace and “loving our neighbors as ourselves” and not being anxious or worrying too much about tomorrow but instead, having faith that God’s will prevails. Although I am respectful of others and abide by laws and limits set in place, I refuse to live my life in fear of the COVID-19 pandemic…or in fear over who will win the election…or in fear of anything really. As our wise President Franklin D. Roosevelt once said, “the only thing to fear is fear itself.”

Eternal Life
And as a last word of inspiration, I am comforted by the fact that we have something bigger and better to look forward to…and that’s eternal life in heaven. Today is All Souls Day in the Catholic faith, and there’s a beautiful reading from today’s Mass from the Book of Wisdom…“Those who trust in him shall understand truth, and the faithful shall abide with him in love: because grace and mercy are with his holy ones, and his care is with his elect.” (Wis 3:1-9) I am excited to be writing my next book, The Wise Man, based on Solomon (who, it is believed, wrote Wisdom). Solomon was very wise…but just like many other kings and prophets (and even saints) made a lot of mistakes like we all do in seeking our way here on earth. We will eventually all know God’s truth, grace and mercy in full…but for today, we can pray to discover these little by little, realizing as long as we are trying to do this, we will be ok.

Thank you God for the privilege of being a free nation…we pray your will prevails and that no matter the outcome, we remain loving, kind and tolerant of one another and filled with grace and peace.

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