Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Take back the power

I am not a political person, really I'm not. Mostly I stay out of political discussions, and my inner self declares that God is in control. But I did have an epiphany after the last election that is starting to come to fruition now.

I, like many of my fellow citizens, was upset after the last election. (Apologies to those who support the winning side for this posting!) I suppose you could characterize me as liberal. I'd like my government to help people, to improve the lives of all citizens. I'd like my tax dollars to go to children and infrastructure. But this stayed merely as a wish for a long time. I didn't do much about it, didn't get involved, didn't participate beyond wishful thinking and casting my one vote.

The deal was that John Kerry would get the job done for me, so I wouldn't have to. I would do my part by paying taxes, but that would be the extent of my involvement. Everyone would get what they need with minimal participation from me.

Then he lost.

The election results shocked me. I became obsessed with the fear that people weren't going to get the help they needed. After all, if the government doesn't help, who will?

I took this to prayer. What would happen now that the election was over? Was goodness truly cut off from all those people reliant on government help?

I felt so powerless. But then I thought about where power really comes from. I believe God is the only power. Love, Truth, Life is the only power there is. This power is in control already. I had been mentally touching on this truth from time to time throughout the election, but now I had to face it and ask myself: Did I really understand this? With Love in control, do I really need to fear?

And it finally occurred to me that I was relying too much on the government to do the things I valued. The government is not God. The real power of the American people comes from our innate goodness, how we each as individuals express God. The government tries to represent that, but it doesn't embody that. That's up to us.

It hit me: I still live in a free country. I can myself do something about it. I can myself volunteer.

Volunteering. Huh. Frankly, the idea was foreign to me, even as a liberal. Did I have time? Did I actually want to have contact with the people who needed me? And what could I possibly do that would help anyone?

But at least the seed of the idea was planted: I needed to do something about it. I needed to do my individual share to better my country in the ways that I valued. I needed to represent with my life the ideals I believed in.

A few months went by. The seed sprouted. And yesterday I signed up to be a volunteer for adult literacy at my local library. I'll have to take several weeks of training courses and make myself available for two hours a week after that. But I finally feel like I'm making progress on my election angst. I'm taking the power back.

The rich in spirit help the poor in one grand brotherhood, all having the same Principle, or Father; and blessed is that man who seeth his brother's need and supplieth it, seeking his own in another's good.

Your ideas and inspiration are welcome! Please comment below or Contact Laura.
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At 6/30/2005 02:08:00 AM, Blogger As always... Rachael said...

Good for you for getting out there and doing something.

As a side note, it's good to know someone of faith can be liberal... all religious people that I know (I am not religious) thought that the world was going to end if Kerry got elected... something about gay marriage really makes people vote against their own economic interests. I guess gays are the new blacks - people it's okay to hate. It sickens me. ANd people won't ever say they "hate" gays... but that's the feeling I get when they reduce an election down to a single ridiculous issue. Last time I checked, marriage was a sacrament, so who is the "state" for getting in the way of God's relationship with one of his children. Last I checked, God likes love and monogamy... or have the rules changed?

(you came to visit my blog a while back... sorry I'm just now reciprocating, but I was on vacation)

At 6/30/2005 05:03:00 AM, Blogger Beautiful Life said...

Well I felt that your site could help me in my journey of life. I saw the add in my page, thought of checking it only because the themes seems to diferent from many others, and also it was a simple blogspot like mine. You are doing a great job.

At 7/01/2005 02:23:00 AM, Blogger Jeff said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

At 7/01/2005 06:26:00 AM, Blogger Laura said...

hi, Jeff, thanks for posting, but I'm going to have to take that one down.... nothing personal, but try not to be critical of other posters' points of view on this blog. (if I could edit to keep your first paragraph, I would.) :) I'm hoping everyone will feel welcome here no matter what their views. if you'd like to discuss the issues you raised privately with me, feel free to use the Contact Laura page to email me!



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