I remember back when I was in college and Ronald Reagan was elected president the first time. He wasn’t a popular presidential choice at UNC that year. It was difficult not to get caught up in the drama of it all. I remember one guy in my dorm in particular, who was devastated when he heard the outcome of the election. He wasn’t anyone I knew well, but I have always remembered his reaction and can almost still channel his emotion of that day. He said he might as well just go and pack his bags, because he knew the draft was coming back! I can’t properly convey the feeling, but it was a dramatic reaction. He felt it strongly and purely. I felt his fear and it really impacted me. There was an air of doom, and a feeling of powerlessness. I remember just feeling sad for everyone…..and also scared of what was to come.
Let’s fast forward to now and look back at that time. Nope, that guy never was sent to war against his will. Ronald Reagan was actually OK as president, and probably is one of our more beloved presidents of all time. Most of us graduated from college without incident. The economy improved, and we entered the post-college world in good spirits. And for most of us in college at that time, life has been pretty good.
So many things in my life have seemed like that. When I think the bottom has fallen out from under me, I find that the sub-floor contains some pretty cool things. Maybe not what I expected, but sometimes exactly what I needed comes at me in a way that stuns and delights.
That’s my hope with Amendment One. I don’t think that the story is over yet in NC. And I believe that eventually good things will come out of it all. Maybe not the things that are expected….but things that I believe are truly honoring to God and in line with His plan for our world. The good that I see is that people took stands and publicly stated what they believed. That doesn’t happen enough these days, and especially in North Carolina. What is really scary are things that lurk in the dark. And when things come out in the light, when you know what other people are thinking, and they know what you are thinking, you can really have good conversations and figure out the solution to problems. Unless your passion and your self-centeredness blinds you to the people around you, and their fears, their hopes, their dreams, their needs. My hope for us all is that we see each other, that we listen to each other, and that we respect each other as we continue the conversations.
When I read, on occasion I will read a book and be so disappointed when it comes to an end. I get to know the characters and love them, and don’t want to leave their lives. How I relish when a sequel to it comes along….seeing them in a slightly altered place, a slightly altered situation, but having the old familiarity. We have finished one book, and begun the sequel. Let us be the characters that are the heroes, and be used to save our world.
― Shel Silverstein
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings
― Psalm 34:18 (CEV)