On the Edge Again

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“Let the king beware for your justice tears ev’ry tyrant from his throne.”

Canticle of the Turning

In another last ditch effort to preserve his reign as president, or more likely, preserve his self esteem, or perhaps to continue raising millions of dollars from his supporters, our president has encouraged Texas AG, General Ken Paxton, to sue battleground states over their election procedures. Wow! We’ve not seen this before — one state telling other states how to manage their elections. Our president is calling this lawsuit, “the big one.”

Much has been done through lawsuits in an effort to get the election results shifted up to the US Supreme Court. There is a slim possibility that the judges, especially those appointed by the president, will side with him and overturn the election. The president has nothing to lose by pushing this agenda to the limits. He will continue to collect money and, even if he loses in the end, he can continue to make himself important by constantly criticizing the new administration as he mounts a campaign for 2024. The only loss is to our democracy and our reputation in the world. While legal experts are claiming this case will be thrown out as frivolous, I find it appalling.

We need to pay attention to history and learn the lessons it teaches. The world has been here before. Hitler was never elected, but became supreme führer of Germany through his tactics. When he was appointed Chancellor he took power into his hands and was able to weaken the nation’s democratic institutions. He pushed the nation into becoming a nation at war, and proclaimed he was making Germany great again. He didn’t do this on his own. He had the support of powerful men, especially in the military, and enamored citizens who hailed him as their savior. He was then able to oversee endless atrocities. Once he had power, ordinary citizens lost all their power to protest. 11 million people would be killed as undesirables under his reign.

We are at the edge of danger, and, while I trust God to be with us, I do not trust our nation to take the right path. After all, somehow the way we do our elections allowed this nation to put into office an unfit president who has delusions of grandeur. When you are at the edge it is easy to tip one way or another. God allows humanity to make choices, even bad choices, and lets us reap the consequences. Read Hebrew scriptures and see how God sent prophets to warn the people of Israel time and again, and when they didn’t listen, allowed them to be dragged off into captivity. Nevertheless, no matter what, God stays with us, gently guiding us back.

My Advent hope is that we have already learned from the consequences of the last four years. After all, the citizens of this nation rejected this president and elected Joe Biden to take his place. Joe is no savior, but he is a man of compassion who cares about our country. While the president we have now has listed a number of undesirables, an imitation of Hitler, the president-elect seems to care about all our citizens. My Advent hope is that we will preserve our democracy and begin to work toward a more perfect Union once more. We have lots of work to do in that direction.

While I have Advent hope, I am watching carefully to see what happens next, and continuing to pray for the coming of God’s Beloved Community on earth as it is in heaven. And I dare to think this Advent — “Could the world be about to turn?”

My beloved ones, let us dare to cling to our Advent hope for a better world in 2021.

Bishop Kedda

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