Loving After Trump {for Mudroom}

I was one of the 19 percent. Nineteen percent of voting white evangelical Christians did not choose Donald J. Trump to be president. And, like most non-Trump supporters, I spent the first days after the election in grief and fear over what a Trump America would look like. The morning after the election, I was shocked the sun still shone, my infant son still grinned at me nearly bursting with joy, and the blue sky dared be so blue.

As a Christian woman, I felt betrayed. I couldn’t bring myself to attend church that Sunday out of fear the service would be business-as-usual. People of color were suddenly tweeting out of their wounds, such as African American sister Yolanda Pierce’s tweet: “White evangelicals: you’ve decisively proven that you love your whiteness more than you love your black & brown brothers & sisters in Christ.” (Yolanda Pierce @YNPierce Nov 8).
I feared being tainted by association.
As a writer, I needed to write it all out. I wanted to add my voice to the cacophony of noise rising in volume. Like the catharsis of screaming into an on-coming train, I wanted my voice to be swallowed by the anger, fear and grief of the voices on the internet.
But I read some words¹ that morning from a wise old king that tempered my impulse.
“Tremble [with anger or fear], and do not sin;
Meditate [speak] in your heart upon your bed, and be still.
Selah [Pause].
I needed to pause, breathe and exhale. If I had spoken, it would have been out of hate, not love. Anger, not activism. Bitterness, not hope. My lament was too raw, too tender.
I desperately wanted to do something. The next words I read suggested this paradox:
Offer the sacrifices of righteousness,
And trust in the Lord.
In other words: before doing, first die. What are the sacrifices of righteousness? Love. Joy. Peace. Patience. Kindness. Goodness. Faithfulness. Gentleness. Self-Control. This response conflicts with every impulse, feeling and emotion I have right now. I don’t want to love a man who uses fear as a motivator and hate as power’s fuel. And I don’t want to trust a God who would allow evil to win.
But I will put down my sword. Loving right now is counter-cultural, revolutionary, even.
Sounds like Someone else I know.
And so I trust not in our president, Congress, the media, the hundreds of articles debating fact and fiction or even in myself. I lean on the One who spoke everything out of nothing. The One who whispered words into my womb and molded a little life. The One who brings down nations and kingdoms, but also coaxes the butterfly out of its chrysalis. The One who outwitted death, sadness, evil and despair with pure, exquisite, soul-washing love.
We raise high the banner words spoken by Desmund Tutu: “We are a resurrection people.” In death, we live on...

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