Posted tagged ‘Donald Trump’

Believing In What I Like!

May 29, 2016

WORDS FROM W.W.                                                             May 29, 2016

                                    

“The Apostles’ Creed” came into its fullest and complete form about thirteen hundred years ago. It has been the church’s statement of faith ever since…kind of!

The statement begins with the words “I believe in…” (I believe in God, the Father almighty, Creator of heaven and earth. I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son…)

In recent times, especially in American culture…in the church and in general…what is believed has taken a tumble. What is believed resonates with personal choice. With the beginning words of the Apostles’ Creed in mind, today’s statement of belief could very well begin with the words “I believe in what I like, and I don’t believe in what I don’t like.” 

Like a six year old staring with a turned up lip at a serving of spinach on his plate, we are prone to judge something as unlikeable. We lump the “unlikeable” together if they are even remotely connected to what it is we really don’t like. For example, if Chris Tomlin comes out with a new worship song that resembles a hymn there will be some people who won’t like it because…follow the flow here!…Chris Tomlin usually composes praise and worship music, and the person doesn’t like praise and worship music.

At both Trump and Clinton political rallies protestors have tried to disrupt the proceedings because they don’t like the candidates. Freedom of speech has been demoted to the back backseat with Grandma in importance, compared to what people like!

“Likes”, a very small word, has taken on prominence, as well as become confusing. Every day on Facebook I’m faced with responding to someone’s post by clicking “Like.” A young lady I know just got hired on for a new teaching position, so I gave her a thumbs up and clicked “Like.” But a little while later someone else mentions that his brother just passed away. I want to come alongside him as he journeys through this, so I once again click “Like.” I was confused by the whole thing. Clicking “Like” sounded like I was delighted by his loss, when I was really just trying to be supportive.

“I believe in what I like” is fickle. It’s like a girlfriend you had in sixth grade, totally awesome and soon to be replaced! I used to like knee-high athletic socks to go with my extremely short athletic shorts. Now I look at those pictures and chuckle, as well as try to keep them hidden from family and friends!

Try this on for size! If a person doesn’t have a solid belief system, he/she is like the Sunday newspaper left outside to be blown one way or another by the wind. When I say “belief system”, I’m not just talking about Christian convictions, but rather life convictions…life beliefs that anchor me from being carried away by today’s biggest “like.”

For example, do we believe, regardless of our disagreement about a political candidate’s stand on health care, military might, Social Security, or education…do we believe in democracy? Do we believe in freedom of speech, or just when someone is saying something that we like?

Do we believe in freedom for all, or just for those who we agree with, or we like?

Do we believe in the grace of God, or do we believe in limited grace, dependent on if we think someone deserves it…or we like the person?

What are the beliefs that we hold that are non-negotiable, that we will always hold on to regardless of the winds of circumstances? Carol and I are two months away from celebrating our 37th anniversary, and there are things we don’t like about one another! What!!!!

I don’t like it when she picks a crouton off my salad, but I don’t slap her hand. She doesn’t like it when I use a piece of dental floss multiple times, but she doesn’t slap me in the face. Our love for one another anchors us even when we’re not always on the same page. In the next election we may even cancel each other’s vote out!

But our love for one another has become like that old oak in the park that is strong, rooted, and consistent. It may sport some scars from the storms of the years, but it’s solid and dependable.

Perhaps that’s a good picture of where our culture and our churches are right now. That too often we resemble sixth grade romances instead of 37 year old marriages!

Why Are So Many People Running For President?

June 17, 2015

WORDS FROM W.W.                                                                                  June 17, 2015

                             

Currently, there are 16 people who have announced that they are candidates in the running for the 2016 Presidential race. Why so many?

Let me step back for a moment. Why would anyone want to be President? On most of the decisions half the country isn’t with you, and the half that are with you are at risk of jumping ship any moment…depending on how your decision affects them. Why would anyone want to be in that position?

Don’t get me wrong. There have been many good presidents in the history of our country, but most of the time they aren’t recognized for effective they were until years after they left office. Rarely has a president been recognized for right decisions while in office! that would mean that the rival party would have to give credit, and how would that look when the next election came around?

It still begs the question that is on my mind…why are there so many people running? The answers to that question range from practical to an inflated level of self-confidence. Some are running because they are getting their name out there for 2020. They don’t expect to win in 2016, but perhaps people will take notice of them for four years on down the road. My guess is that most of those reading this post will find it difficult to remember even half of the candidates who have declared, let alone the two others who have formed “exploratory committees.”

Some of the candidates will fall by the wayside in a few months when they realize that their is no steam in the engine. But others will stay the course too long because they either feel called to run, have never started something they didn’t finish, are being urged by their constituents to stay the course, or they are simply full of themselves.

Self-confidence needs to be a quality of the president, but not so self-assured to the point that the person doesn’t think their bodily discharges don’t stink…if you get my drift!

If I start believing I can personally fly, and keep telling myself that, at some point the reality of my earthboundness is going to come into play in a crashing sort of way.

What should we look for in a president? Some may crucify me for this, but I’m looking for just a few things. The wisdom of Solomon…the patience of Job…the strength of Joshua…the prayerfulness of Daniel…the ability to listen like David…the grace of Paul…the faith of Abraham…and the willingness to say “I’m wrong” like the prodigal son.

I know that I just listed eight men in those qualities, but gender if not an issue for me. the candidate I vote for will not be on the basis of a gender, although I know a lot of people would make their decision on that basis.

I simply go back to the question again: why would anyone want to be president?

“Somebody has to be” may be the best reason!