Congratulations to Barack Obama

November 5, 2008

church / culture / politics

Major congratulations to Barack Obama, to the United States, and to the world. We have seen an historic moment and a significant one.

I feel like there is an incredible potential for good change. Change to overcome baggage that is hundreds of years old. Change to overcome baggage that is decades old. Change to overcome baggage that is eight years old. And hopefully change to overcome baggage that is a few months old. We are a country that is full of baggage, and we have an opportunity before us that is unlike any we have had before. The world is watching to see what we do with it.

75% of white, “born-again” voters apparently backed John McCain in this election. Many for valid reasons, and many for reasons built upon fear. Fear of stereotypes. Fear of letting go of preconceptions and culture war fronts that are decades old. Will we be able to support the good in what is happening? Barack Obama has the potential to become one of the great presidents of our country, and mark a break with parts of our past and offer a different story to us and the rest of the world.

Certainly this potential is not a guarantee. Even if it is realized, Barack Obama is not a savior (fortunately, nor does he claim to be). People of the kingdom of the Cross will still find much to resist, and must not place their allegiance apart from that Cross. We have been down that road already, and it has given society new reasons to hate religion. As evangelicals, we have sought righteousness and neglected justice for too long.

May there be new ways to seek justice with those who agree with us and those who don’t, and better ways to seek righteousness that is not based on selfishness or fear, and ways to seek both at the same time.