“It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in princes.” ~Psalm 118:8-9
Election day broke me. It physically and mentally broke me.
And, now I am a different person.
Let me take you back to explain why. The year was 2000 and I was about to be married. George W. Bush and Al Gore were in a contentious fight for the White House. Like this year, 2020, the election was not decided on election night. I watched with fervor from our new house, my husband still living in his place with the guys. We were Bush all the way…in California…in Democrat territory. The election was called for Gore, then retracted. The election was called for Bush, then retracted. This happened multiple times, until I finally went to bed. It felt weird not knowing who was President when we went to bed. Florida hung in the balance, like the hanging chads that finally put Bush in office after a court ruling in December of that year, and we were on edge. It was like the night before a storm, only the night lasted 35 days.
And, here we are in 2020 with the Presidential election winner, yet again, in question. It looks like Biden has enough votes (real or produced) to take the election, but much counting must occur, and there is time. Bush and Gore waited a month, and Trump and Biden can do the same.
Not to say that there aren’t shenanigans going on in the 2020 election. Hundreds of thousands of ballots were “found,” all, oddly, for Biden. Other military ballots, mostly for Trump, were recently discovered in a trash bin. If anyone thinks that other forces aren’t at work to decide elections, they’ve been snookered. Lulled by an agenda-driven media promoting ‘newspeak’ and Deep State intelligence, average citizens down their daily blue pill with their morning coffee, like good little comrades. And, for the record, no, I’m not crazy. I took the red pill. You should try it. Just pay attention to patterns and don’t trust what you’re told. Seek out information for yourself. Don’t rely on the media, which has such obvious bias that even an elementary school kid could see it. Don’t be so blinded by your politics that you can’t be intellectually honest. Take a step outside of your political prison to see the light, to see what’s really going on.
Election night was my undoing.
I had geared up for a Trump sweep and victory. After spending countless hours on social media promoting Trump and blasting Biden, I was poised for triumph. With red sparkling nail polish and delicious beers, I was ready to cheer my candidate to success! We were on the verge of a revolution!
But, it didn’t happen.
Instead, I drank too many beers trying to quell my anxiety, and ended up yelling at my husband. I upset my college-aged daughter with my anger. I was a mess, and there was nothing cutely “hot” about it; it was ugly. We would take a break from the election results and watch the farcical TV show Chuck, but I couldn’t keep my hands from grabbing my phone and checking the numbers. I became like Randolph and Mortimer Duke in the movie Trading Places after they’d lost their billions and I wanted desperately, like Mortimer, to scream, “Turn those machines back on!” If I had been able to see out of my blurry eyes and look at myself in the mirror, I would’ve been disgusted.
After another day of anxiety and more hours on social media, hubby came to me with words of peace. “Let’s just say that Biden won, and we go about our lives.”
But, how? Trump is the one, he’s the man, he stands up for the little people, he doesn’t take China money, or collude with other nations against the US. He’s the man who stands between us and the Deep State. He’s the one keeping us safe and making life better for everyone with record minority employment, tax cuts that help working families, increasing US manufacturing and jobs, US energy independence, and sentencing reform that helps minorities and people chained by addiction…and the list goes on and on. If we only read his accomplishments and we don’t know who enacted them, as Americans, we must say with honesty that his achievements have been blessings to this country. He’s done amazing work, IF YOU ONLY LOOK AT HIS ACTIONS. But, you have to ignore the media and Liberals who want us to hate “the bad, orange man.”
Still, Hubby persisted. “This is nothing but a distraction. We have so much else to do than engage heavily in something we can’t control. They’re going to determine a winner, no matter what we do.”
He was right of course.
I recalled Stephen Covey’s “Circles of Control, Influence and Concern.” The Circle of Control are the things I have direct control over. These are things such as where I spend my money, what time I turn off my phone, my behaviors, words and actions. The Circle of Influence are the things that concern me over which I have some influence. Things like getting a promotion, my health and physical fitness, and my relationships. The Circle of Concern are things over which I have nearly zero control. These are things I’m concerned about, but I can’t change, such as the weather, other people’s decisions, illnesses, and—gulp!—contested elections.
Nothing I could do would make Biden or Trump win. The votes were cast. The machines have been turned off. No amount of hemming or hawing or spending countless hours on social media was going to sway this election one way or another. It was pointless to put energy into it.
With so much more going on in our lives, and so much of God’s will to do, why would I even think I needed to worry about it one way or another.
Wasn’t it I, when other Christians blasted me for supporting President Trump, proudly recited Romans 13:1: “Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.”
So, why would I not trust God now? If God wants Biden as President, God will make him President. If God wants Trump’s four more years, God will make that happen. If God doesn’t care one way or another, God will let it unfold in the hands of men. It’s not for me to judge what God does. I need to simply follow Him and he will make my paths straight.
I’ve known for a long time that I spend too much time on the social media machine. I’ve tried—half-heartedly, apparently—to limit my time on the platforms. I’ve tried to pull back, or not get involved. Then, I make excuses that it’s important because I’m promoting truth, or connecting with friends. Which is partly true, of course, but do I really help others see truth? Do I point people to God, to Jesus, to the Holy Spirit, the only real truth? Do I really connect with friends, or do we have superficial interactions that I count as relationships?
I think I’ve been living a lie.
Last night, I made a change. I vowed to not get emotionally involved in whatever outcome was going to happen. If Trump wins, great. If Biden wins, I have a new President, like the rest of the country—for a few months at least, until Kamala takes his place.
I am emotionally divested of the cares of this world. Jesus said in Matthew 12:17: “Give back to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s,” and, like Jesus, I will not be entangled in worldly politics. It doesn’t mean I won’t stump for my candidates and vote the way I feel is best, it just means I won’t tie my emotions into each election. Jesus deserves my emotions, not a candidate I won’t remember in a few months.
I’m emotionally invested in God, my family and my friends who I see in person, the people with whom we break bread and enjoy their company.
Now that I write this, it seems rather silly; and, it definitely it seems easy. But, it’s not. Not when I’ve been all-consumed by the siren song of the social media trap where I’m told I’m making a difference, but really, I’m just on a treadmill. I’m plodding ahead, watching the digital numbers tick up my mileage, but when I turn off the machine, I’ve gone nowhere. I’m in the same room I started; only time has passed. And, that’s the irony of social media, it makes you feel your views are not only important but necessary. Yet, in the end, it’s just a time suck.
So, I’ll await the outcome, whenever it happens, but the fight is over. The machines have tallied our votes. The officials are counting ballots. And, today is a glorious, crisp fall day with bright sunshine and a clear blue sky. My neighbors across the street still proudly display their Biden sign. I still have my Trump banner and two signs up (a little ostentatious, to be sure). We still greet each other. We’re still neighbors. No matter what I post on social media it won’t make a whit of a difference in this election, because it’s already over.
We can’t turn the machines back on.
But, we CAN invite some friends over to break bread.
“They followed a daily discipline of worship in the Temple followed by meals at home, every meal a celebration, exuberant and joyful, as they praised God. People in general liked what they saw. Every day their number grew as God added those who were saved.” ~Acts 2:46