Something just feels different today. I won’t disagree that it has something to do with the new president…I’ll tell you, from a personal standpoint, I didn’t vote for him because he’s a black man. I voted for him because he’s CHANGE, because he’s a Democrat (and I’m a liberal), but more than anything else, because I feel his past experience—the years of public service on the ground organizing people—was the closest to a proper Christian (read: Disciple of Christ) of the two of them. I honor the fact that McCain had years of public service, both in the military and in Congress, that’s no small feat, but I don’t want someone who, much like the priests of Jesus’ time turned their focus from service a life for God to the “propriety” of a person’s stature and acts, focuses on the stature of being a “Maverick” and “standing against his own party.” No, I want to KNOW the person leading me has been on the ground, doing the works he wants me to do. And we see that with Obama….he didn’t JUST go and shake hands at that youth center, he painted the walls (however little…he’s a man with MANY obligations!), he passed out chickens the day before Thanksgiving, he got to work and was getting security briefings EVERY MORNING before his butt was even in the chair behind the desk in the Oval Office (as an aside, I don’t think it’s going to be there much. He really doesn’t strike me as someone to sit idly behind a desk for long. When he was signing the things he had to yesterday, he wanted to get up and go…he kept saying he “forgot” there was more, but I REALLY think he just didn’t want to sit around when there is SO much work to do!!!).
That’s not to say I don’t think this man sits ever (this is a nice segway…). In fact, I don’t think his desire not to sit much is out of a nervousness or anxiousness. QUITE the contrary. I think this President is VERY centered. Some might see the look that has crossed his face a few times as smug…no, I think this man is happy. And not just because good grief he’s the leader of the free world. NO. I think this is a man who knows himself and, best of all, knows God. When I hear him say “God bless you and God bless America,” I feel confident that he means it. I ALWAYS found Bush very fishy, wishy-washy, whatever you want to call it. With this President, you don’t have to hear him say “I pray for you all” to know we’re being prayed for, and that he’s got an ACTIVE prayer life. It’s a given!
And I was totally inspired by the National Prayer Service this morning. More than anything, and more than I’ve ever been inspired by anything religious LEANING I’ve seen on tv, I was totally moved by the sermon given by the Rev. Dr. Sharon E. Watkins. I think the part that struck me most came within the first minute of her sermon, a story often attributed to Cherokee wisdom (I won’t go off on the whole thing about how people easily screw up Native American references—she did well, it’s others I take issue with, that’s not a topic for now, just a mention:
One evening a grandfather was teaching his young grandson about the internal battle that each person faces.
“There are two wolves struggling inside each of us,” the old man said.
“One wolf is vengefulness, anger, resentment, self-pity, fear . . .
“The other wolf is compassion, faithfulness, hope, truth, love . . .” The grandson sat, thinking, then asked:
“Which wolf wins, Grandfather?”
His grandfather replied, “The one you feed.”
I was struck by just how true that statement is. The wolf that has won since 2001—not so much because of the actions of those outside the United States, but all too often by the actions and policies of the government up until yesterday, was the wolf of vengefulness, anger, resentment, and fear. Instead of leading us as the former President Bush might have intended to lead us at first, to repair of the wounds to our country and our psyche, we were led to a place where fear, suspicion of MANY (not just the truly bad people in that act), and true elitism won out. But I—like Pres. Obama and Rev. Dr. Watkins—know there is a better, deeper, more enduring and loving spirit to this country, and that the other wolf is going to be fed, and it will repair a lot of what needs mended in this country, and it will win out.
One last thought that I have had several times these last 24 hours….
This is a face and a voice I can get USED to hearing!
P.S. So sorry I didn’t add this before—so you can read the transcript, which I looked all over for…it wasn’t on CNN, where I watched the National Prayer Service, or any other place I could think of—-go to the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) website. My link will take you right to the page you can download the sermon from, and read it yourself 😀