We’ve watched almost two years of wall-to-wall campaign coverage, argued politics in Facebook comments sections for hours on end and endured an onslaught of political advertisements and random strangers asking us if we’re registered to vote.
And now we have chosen a new president.
Chances are, you’re not happy. You’re not happy with the candidate that won. You’re not happy with Uncle Bob or your friend Jane. You’re not happy with leaders you used to admire. You’re not happy with the media. You’re not happy with America.
Maybe “you’re not happy” is an understatement. You’re probably sick and tired of all of it. Let’s go a little further, you’re probably mad as hell.
I’ve felt it, too. The anger. Disgust. Frustration. Sadness. Disappointment.
Those emotions have led me to think, say and do some things I’m not proud of. I have strong opinions, I’m passionate about those opinions and I get emotional about them – not always a great combination.
Don’t get me wrong – I have had some great conversations with wonderful people, many of whom disagree with me on just about everything. Those exchanges have helped me understand why people are thinking the way they are and have helped me shape my own stances on certain issues. I hope you’ve had some of those types of interactions, too. But I’ve also let my emotions run wild, both in person and on social media.
Now it’s over. The votes have been cast, the winners announced, and the speeches delivered.
But it’s not really over is it? The wounds and divisions that have been caused by this election might take a long time to heal, if they ever heal at all. The anger is still very real and very much on the surface for all to see (just take a quick glance at Facebook or Twitter).
We’ve pitted ourselves against each other based on a wide variety of lines: race, gender, religion, socioeconomic status, political party… the list goes on and on.
The most disheartening thing for me has been the division among Christians in this election and how we’ve let two political candidates rip people of faith apart from the inside out.
We need to heal. We need to heal as a Church and as a country. But how?
I don’t have a lot of answers, but just some thoughts on how we might get started.