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A Christian Supplement to Presidential Hope

07 Nov

English: Barack Obama delivering his electoral...

If you’re reading this because you think I’m about to bash the President of the United States, sorry!

Ballots were cast yesterday, and regardless of your choice, that’s history.

Those who choose to live in the past will be unable to influence the present.  I pray we choose to live in the present, where progress can actually occur.

I was pleased to hear the President address the need for hope in his victory speech.  (View HERE, at the 18:28 mark).   Hope is one of the mainstays of the Christian faith.  So I thought I would take the liberty of expanding on the President’s speech with some supplemental thoughts from a Christian worldview.

“… not talking about blind optimism”

…and neither do Christians talk about blind optimism.  Our hope has a source:

“I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.” (Rom 15:13 NLT)

My concern is when we begin to hope in other things that are not the source of hope.  If we look carefully at the verse above, we note that there are trust issues involved.  Perhaps it’s time we took a good, hard look at what we trust.  And I’m not just talking about Americans, I’m talking about Christians.

The encouragement here is that regardless of the temporary things we put our trust in, they are not the source of our hope.  The source of our hope is safe, secure, and eternal.

“… not the hope that ignores the enormity of the task ahead…”

I don’t think anyone is naive enough to ignore the enormity of the task ahead.  When my kids were little, I could barely manage getting three of them to agree to do something, let alone getting 300 million people on the same page.

We must not forget the enormity of the task before us, but neither should we forget the enormity of the God we serve.

At the same time, I have to ask myself, “Am I living in a way that reminds people how enormous God is?”  Or am I being small… petty… and self-centered?

“We are greater than the sum of our individual ambitions.”

Are we?

Isn’t individual ambition the fundamental motivation of the fall?  Isn’t this the curse of the condition of sin… that our individual ambition continues to interfere with our relationship with the Creator of the Universe?

I’m not pointing this out to say the President is wrong.  In fact, I think he’s right.  We are greater than the sum of our individual ambitions, as long as we are willing to lay them down for a greater cause.  That’s what the President is encouraging us to do: to lay aside our selfish ambitions for the greater cause called the United States of America.  The history of America is rich with tales of sacrifice for the common good.

But as Christians, we know a history of sacrifice that is richer, more enduring, and more life-changing than the American story, great as it is.  Perhaps it’s time we focused on that story, because there’s one thing that is more even compelling than laying aside our selfish ambition for a greater cause…

it’s laying aside our selfish ambition for a greater relationship.

Where is the source of your hope today?  What will you do to lay aside selfish ambition for a greater relationship?

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