So yesterday I stopped in at our Men's Group breakfast and Bible study, and we read Psalm 146, among other things, in which the Psalmist sings,
Psa. 146:1 Praise the LORD!
Praise the LORD, O my soul!
Psa. 146:2 I will praise the LORD as long as I live;
I will sing praises to my God all my life long.
Psa. 146:3 Do not put your trust in princes,
in mortals, in whom there is no help.
Psa. 146:4 When their breath departs, they return to the earth;
on that very day their plans perish.
Psa. 146:5 Happy are those whose help is the God of Jacob,
whose hope is in the LORD their God,
Psa. 146:6 who made heaven and earth,
the sea, and all that is in them;
who keeps faith forever;
Psa. 146:7 who executes justice for the oppressed;
who gives food to the hungry.
The LORD sets the prisoners free;
Psa. 146:8 the LORD opens the eyes of the blind.
The LORD lifts up those who are bowed down;
the LORD loves the righteous.
Psa. 146:9 The LORD watches over the strangers;
he upholds the orphan and the widow,
but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin.
Psa. 146:10 The LORD will reign forever,
your God, O Zion, for all generations.
Praise the LORD!
I especially paid attention to verses 3 & 4, and realized I needed to chill on the whole presidential election thing. I've always disliked when our current President Bush appropriates apocalyptic Biblical language and imagery in his speeches and descriptions of his own administration and work; yet somehow along the way I bought into the same kind of language regarding the importance of this upcoming election. I've hinged a lot of my hope on Kerry-Edwards winning in 2004.
Kerry and Edwards may be relatively better leaders than Bush-Cheney (clearly I believe so), but they will not save things, they will not bring true hope, healing, an end to hunger, protection of the orphan, the widow, etc. If my rhetoric implies that the salvus of the US is dependent on the election of these two men, then my rhetoric is idolatrous.
So I confess to having placed too much trust and hope in the Democrat candidates winning in 2004. I will still vote for them come November 2nd, and I truly hope that all those who read this will consider voting for them as well, because I believe they represent a better vision for justice and equality in America- but I will not be apocalyptic about the whole thing.