I’m glad the presidential election is over and the campaign signs can come down. I’m proud of our country’s voter turn-out. This election galvanized many people and has produced a history-changing result. I pray that President-elect Obama will choose advisors wisely and that God will use him to help the US and the world to be a better place. This election for some seems like the demise or sunset of their views and values. For others, the sun has finally come up and it is the dawn of new day.
Regardless of how you voted, it is now time for us to come together and tackle the unfinished business of helping God fulfill the prayer that we pray so often, “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Each of us has a part to play. If we do enter a severe recession or another Great Depression, it is time for us to become the next “Builder” generation or what Tom Brokaw called, “The Greatest Generation.” Sociologists and historians will tell you that the melieu of those tough years in the 1930’s and 40’s generated an unprecedented sense of dedication. The results can be measured in church attendance, civil rights legislation, scientific discoveries, and much more.
I hope we can rise to the occasion. I think the UMC has the best framework of grace imaginable, so, rather than seeming like a mainline dinosaur, we can be poised to help people through these trying times. We must make the Gospel relevant and provide a haven, a sanctuary, and a outlet for people’s anxiety and altruism. Our best years are ahead of us not behind us, if we do our part.
A Scripture passage sums up what I’m trying to say: Ephesians 4:15-16. It has been on my mind as I have been conducting charge conferences and seeing our connectionalism at work, “Speaking the truth in love we will in all things grow up into him who is the head, that is Christ. From him, the whole body joined and held together by every supporting ligament grows and builds itself up in love as each part does its work.”
In and through the love of Christ we can offer support to a hurting world as each of us does our part. Our distinctive connectionalism can be summed up with a T-shirt slogan, “Together We Can Do More!” It’s sunrise not sunset for the US or the UMC!