Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Grief and Disillusionment Bring New Hope

US flag flying at half-staff at sunsetImage via WikipediaOk, I'll admit it. I'm grieving.

I know that no human being is our savior. A different election outcome would not have brought Heaven on Earth. My hope is not in politicians. My hope is in the Lord.

But I'm grieving.

Grief is appropriate for a devastating loss, for the death of a loved one. And for me, that's what this election represents.

But let me be very clear about this. I don't think America is in mortal danger because of the candidate who won. I believe the opposite.

I believe that the candidate won because America is in mortal danger. That's why I said that I grieve over what this election represents, not over what it did.

And frankly, if the other candidate had won, I would not feel much better.

If America had truly been a vital nation "Under God," not only would the outcome have been different, but we wouldn't even have been presented with the same candidates or the same issues. This election didn't so much change the country as it revealed it.

And so I grieve the death of a dream.

I know that the America I love is really an ideal, a dream, a hope. For many years, the America I love has not been the America that I live in. And more and more I'm having to admit that the ideal, the dream, the hope could never really be achieved by human beings. Democracy is the best human form of government, but it is still human, and so will still be brought down by the weight of its own sin. It can only work as the Founding Fathers dreamed IF it is a godly nation seeking to be led by godly leaders.

America hasn't been that for a long, long time. So November 4th, 2008 was inevitable. If it hadn't happened this year, it would have happened in 2012, or 2016. In fact, I suspect that in God's eyes, Election Day was a minor blip. He's been watching our moral and spiritual decay and our blatant rebellion growing worse and worse throughout our history.

If a gardener knows that the root system of a vine runs under his whole property, he won't be surprised to see any particular shoot pop out of the ground. Besides, our Gardener can't be surprised by anything. He removes kings and raises up kings (Dan. 2:21).

We are the ones who feel the shock, because we had hoped the roots wouldn't send up this particular sprout. We feel the threat of the power that this shoot wields. And we see the danger that it poses to America.

But if we look at any one individual as the greatest threat facing our nation, then we misunderstand the danger.

The danger is never in the sprouts. It's in the root.

Our nation made this choice, and made all of the previous choices which led up to this choice, because our nation desperately needs God and has rejected Him. And that, my friends, is what we need to grieve. Not the outcome of the election, or the man it will put in office, though there is a great deal of heartache that will no doubt follow those two things.

Let me say it again.

We are headed for a great deal of grief now that we've chosen this president. But the heartache will not be primarily the result of the election or of the new president. It will be the result of national apostasy, of which November 4th was only a symptom.

We should not be grieving as if yesterday marked a horrible defeat for a great nation. We should be grieving as those who recognize that our nation ceased to be great decades ago, and has been self-destructing for a long time. Let our prayers focus around our lost nation, pleading with God to grant us repentance from sin, and grant us true Spirit-led revival.

And by all means, let's be disillusioned.

"Disillusionment - noun - a freeing or a being freed from illusion." (Dictionary.com)

We, as God's people, are called to walk in truth, not in illusion. And faith in human government is faith in an illusion (Ps. 118:9, Ps. 146:3, Jer. 17:5-8.)

When God strips away illusions, He is doing us a great kindness. The process may be painful, because we tend to love the little dreams we've clung to. But the end result is something far better than any illusion could ever give.

The result is real hope. Not a false hope based on the supposed virtues of any politician or nation, but a true hope in our Heavenly King and our eternal home.

Php. 3:20 For our citizenship is in heaven, from which we also eagerly wait for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.


How often have we Americans read that, and said that? How often have we actually meant it? I fear that, for many of us, those have just been words, nothing more.

God is going to change that. When "Hate Crimes" laws are passed which get your pastor (and mine) thrown in prison for preaching the truth of God; when Obama fulfills his promise to sign our nation on with the Alliance of Civilizations, which among other things defines all who believe in absolute truth as "terrorists" and says parents who teach their children exclusive dogmas are guilty of child abuse, then we're all going to begin to long for our Heavenly home much more fervently.

But that's where our main allegiance should have been all along.

So I, for one, will grieve in my own way, but I will also have hope, for the truth of Php. 3:20 is becoming more real to me already. No one, NO ONE can corrupt that Heavenly city, and its King will never be deposed!

Praise God!





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10 comments:

Avalon said...

Thank you for writing this, Betsy. You are so insightful. I love the way you look at things. The comparison to a vine shoot speaks to me, since I love gardening. Indeed, this has been in the making already for a long time. It didn't take a psychic to see this one coming, right? :)

I'm sorry I've been so scarce. Please forgive me. I'm still cleaning up smoke damage. The Lord saw fit to slow me down. His ways are perfect. But I'm almost done. Just a few minor details to finish and I'll finally be free to live life again. I'm estimating a week or less 'til my house is back in order. Then we'll have to go get some lunch.

Meanwhile, let us write the Word on our hearts and praise Him for the fulfillment of His prophecy.

God bless you; you are so awesome!

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

"This election didn't so much change the country as it revealed it."

I don't even know what to say, except that my grief has now grown via your words. I didn't think it could blossom any further.

Much to think about.

peace~elaine

Betsy Markman said...

Oh dear, Elaine, it was not my desire to increase grief!

Father, please give dear Elaine peace and hope and joy in a special way today...

JesusRulzMe said...

Hello dear sister Betsy,

I think all true disciples of Christ are grieving, yet rejoicing that God is still God and He is still on the throne, Sovereign and good.

All we have to do is fix our eyes on our Savior and lift up prayers from a humble and grateful heart.

BTW, I'm blessed to know that my article on forgiveness was used by God to bless you.

With great love in Jesus,
Sunny

LauraLee Shaw said...

"When God strips away illusions, He is doing us a great kindness. The process may be painful, because we tend to love the little dreams we've clung to. But the end result is something far better than any illusion could ever give."

Amen. Your insights are right on, I believe. May revival come to this country.

Yvonne said...

Sigh... *tears* of sorrow for our country. I think you put into words how I felt yesterday....not anger...or feeling of loss...but seeing the proof that our country has been blinded to the truth.

Dear Lord, help us to stand strong for you. Help us to teach our children and grandchildren Your ways. 'Even so come, Lord Jesus' Amen.

Robert said...

Outstanding observation--the election is not the symptom of coming disaster but the final warning that it's already here. I've been looking for a way to put it into words, and that is it.

Thank you for writing this.

Victoria said...

Amen Betsy!
it could not have been said more eloquently.

Tim Brown said...

Betsy:

I think you have expressed some things that have been going on in my mind as well. I was born in 1954 and in many ways I've been trying to ignore how much this country has changed since my own childhood.

Yes, we have so many crutches. And God will remove the crutches to show what we've been leaning on.

Tim Brown said...

I would only add to my previous comment that in my area I will probably not see any pastors going to prison for their preaching. They have long ago departed from having anything to say that confronts the culture regarding sin.

Having been in such a struggle to even find a decent church for so very long, I have often wondered if I'd just prefer to be in a persecuted country where the underground church is thriving and fellowship is pure and people love the Word. I used to work at a large university (Western Illinois University). WHen I was converted ten years ago, it was a scary place to be for a young CHristian. You just felt outnumbered on the enemy's territory. When we moved here, I prayed that the Lord would give us a home with a nice basement we could have church in should hard times come. I believe He answered that prayer miraculously.

Will it come to pass? I don't know. But after long and hard thought, I'd rather be in a prison worshiping with real Christians than playing the role in an apostate church.

I think you are absolutely right about our times sharpening the focus of those who are true believers.

By the way, a question. I noticed a "reblog" reference at the end of your article. Did you add that (and how?) or did my browser put it there? It allowed me to select a quote and have it published at my blog, http://reformedgadfly.blogspot.com.

Again, Betsy, excellent post and very insightful. I think what I wanted to say in my first comment was you must've been reading my mind.

Blessings.

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