Yesterday I woke up, checked my facebook on my phone, and this is what I read, “Lord help us he’s got another four years.”
I think that statement pretty much summed up most of what I saw on social networking sites following election day. If I had to distil everything I have seen leading up to and following this election it would be one word, cynicism.
I’ll be honest, when I read that statement it depressed me. I was hoping that since it was all said and done we could all move on with life and maybe go back to just posting cute pictures of our kids and kittens on facebook, but sadly it seems that is not the case. In fact in the past few days I have seen the rhetoric of cynicism ramp up all the more.
I have to be honest. I was quick to respond to this cynicism with more cynicism, and I had a Christian brother call me out on it. I posted some pithy, poorly thought out, sarcastic statement that pretty much only served to add to the multitude of depression that was post-election laments. I am thankful to this brother, and his willingness to call me out. The fact is if you’re a minister cynicism and sarcasm really need to be on the back burner of your vocabulary.
With that being said, I have decided to share my response to this brother in Christ for two reasons.
1) He responded back that this should have been my original post. So I’m calling a Mulligan and posting this instead.
2) I want to be helpful to those of you who are battling with the desire to be cynical and sarcastic.
I have taken out the name of the person it was written to and a few little details in order to respect their privacy and the privacy of others.
My post was pretty irresponsible and not well thought out. I have said for a while now that sarcasm is a crutch for the weak and unfortunately I used that crutch this morning. Like most items on social networking it could be read and translated in many ways and I need to be more aware of that. To be honest I was just sick of waking up the morning after an election and seeing that everyone and their mom was still fighting with each other about which candidate was the best. As such, I have deleted it. Your point is well taken. I think there may be a deeper issue here though than my post. It’s true, I am a cynical guy. It’s something that I have always struggled with and something that God is continually working on in me. If my last few posts have seemed like I am making fun of the election it is because I am. Hear me. I love this country. I love the men and women who died to give me the chance to vote. I have family members and former members of my youth group that have served and continue to serve in the military so that I have the freedom that I do to vote. I just recently saw a family from my old ministry in Virginia Beach whose son in law, who was in my youth group, is home now from the war after an IED exploded killing many in his group and causing him severe injury to his leg and a diagnosis of PTSD. It’s people like him that cause me to be so frustrated and cynical about this election season. When I turn on the TV, pick up the phone, check my mail, and watch the news I do not see two men who are worried about me, that young man, or the direction of this country. I see two men who will say anything that needs to be said to be elected. Who flip-flop on a different issue every day. I see men who pander to the religious right, not because they have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, they do it because they need our vote. I see men who spend millions and millions of dollars to trash, defame, and insult the other candidate on a minute by minute basis. I see Christians who place more hope and trust in the empty promises of a bought and paid for candidate then they do in Jesus Christ, and I hear preachers preach from their pulpits that God wants us to vote republican. So I readily admit after months and months of that I have become a little cynical and a little sarcastic. I do feel like I am not the only one of my generation that feels this way. But I say this with no cynicism or sarcasm. I love Christ, I love that he has allowed me to live in a country where I can vote, and I pray for the man who is in office now that he will do his job to the best of his ability so that God can be praised and glorified.