This whole post is going to be difficult because I know people don’t want to hear this. But I haven’t seen as many posts as I thought I would that aren’t attacking any particular party and their reactions to this election.
This week has been interesting. Heck, this whole year has been interesting.
Election years have a tendency to get crazy, but this one took the cake.
We had a woman running for president who has been caught up in a great deal of scandal over the past few decades and who was under FBI investigation twice. We had a man who spoke arrogantly and unkindly towards numerous groups of people, and who got caught up in scandal because of past actions. And that’s all before you even begin to look at political stances and stuff.
We saw more and more people voting third party. We saw a lot of people who didn’t vote.
People were fighting and tearing each other down leading up to the election. I lost count of how many posts I saw on Facebook that either started or ended with something to the effect of “If you’re voting for that idiotic scumbag, then you’re just as bad as he/she is, so delete me. I don’t want to be friends with you.”
Now the election is over. Either the candidate you wanted to win won, or the candidate you wanted to win didn’t.
Of the more popular candidates, Clinton and Trump, there were two slogany motto things I heard a lot: “Stronger Together” and “Make America Great Again”.
Unfortunately, the reactions I’ve been seeing since Tuesday don’t show strength in unity among the American people or greatness. It’s sad.
Know my point in this post. I get some people are scared. I get some people are angry. I get some people are sad. I’m seeing it from multiple angles because of my diverse friend group. This post also isn’t about how republicans reacted when President Obama was elected and reelected, or whether or not people rioted back then. None of that is the point. If you read this post and you bring up those things as argumentation, it’s a red herring. Don’t bother.
This post isn’t aimed at democrats. It’s not aimed at republicans. It’s not aimed at third party voters. It’s not aimed at people who didn’t vote. It’s aimed at the people who are acting maliciously because they are upset.
I understand the reactions. Well, I don’t completely. But I see where people say they are coming from and I understand that sometimes we act in ways that we shouldn’t when we’re upset because we think it’ll change things.
In Martin Luther King Jr.’s book entitled Strength to Love, which appears to be an excerpt from one of his sermons, he wrote, “Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.”
This time is a time for dialogue. This time is a time for encouragement. This time is a time for learning and love. I’m not saying to take everything that happens and pretend it’s fine. I’m not saying to pretend your feelings aren’t there. I’m not saying to not stand for truth.
What I’m saying is that there’s a point where the divisiveness is just ridiculous. We can’t just all turn on each other. We can’t just fight tooth and nail all the time, lashing out, calling names, writing people who we’ve always loved and who have always loved us completely out of our lives because of an election and then expect things to get better and for everyone to be happy.
You know that thing that people say about how it’s not what happens to you in life that matters, but how you react? I’m not saying that what happens to you doesn’t matter at all; but our reactions have very serious consequences.
For an election year where I heard more than ever that we need to love and bind together and be strong and be great, I’m surprised at the lack of love.
Regardless of how people acted before this election year, during the course of the election year, or even now, we need to act out of love.
To the people who are upset about the election who are lashing out, please consider and pray about this passage and its application in your life. MLK Jr. was so right. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.
“1 Corinthians 13-The Excellence of Love
13 If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.3 And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body [a]to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.
4 Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, 5 does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, 6 does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; 7 [b]bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
8 Love never fails; but if there are gifts of [c]prophecy, they will be done away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part; 10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away. 11 When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I [d]became a man, I did away with childish things. 12 For now we see in a mirror [e]dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known. 13 But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the [f]greatest of these is love.”