The Work of Community

Next week we will inaugurate our new President.  Donald Trump will become our 45th President.  The election just passed was one unlike any of us has ever seen.  Even though there are a lot of people who are happy about the outcome of the election, there were more than half of the voters who were disappointed.  And many of those who supported Hillary Clinton have made their disappointment known in various ways.

I must confess to being baffled by the rioting in certain cities because of this election.  And I’m also baffled by the “Not My President” signs and shirts.  I don’t mind sharing with you that President-elect Trump was not who I voted for.  And while I was alarmed at some of his rhetoric during the campaign, I am a part of the democratic republic that picked him.  Because of that, he will be my President.  And if anyone deserves our prayers more than Donald Trump as he takes the oath of office next week, I don’t know who that could be.

Howard Thurman wrote the following as “The Work Of Elections”: “When the speeches and debates are stilled, when the signs have come down from our yards, the traveling journalists are home and even the pundits have turned to other predictions, jokes, memes, hashtags—

The work of community begins: 

to listen to the angry, to heal the war of words

to remind the hopeful of hope, and all the people, after the stumping and bunting and canvassing-- 

that people are still hungry, still homeless and lost, 

the faithful of Allah are waiting to make a home here, veterans need services, 

those living with disabilities need respect, prisoners need release from prisons built by incarceration inc. 

The work of community continues, to rebuild the nation slowly and over a long time,

To make peace a priority because it is a necessity and always, as after Christmas and Passover, Ramadan and Diwali, and after a time of great conflict—to make music in the heart.”

Donald Trump will be our President and he deserves our support as he assumes this role.  He also needs to be held accountable—just like every other elected official before him.  That is the work of the people and it is a crucial element of our democracy.  We should all pray that he is effective as a leader because it is good for all of us if he is.