This newsletter article will appear in next week’s eChimes from St. John’s Cathedral
Last week [Ed. note: yesterday] the country voted for a lot of things, including who the next President of the United States of America will be. For many (in fact a majority) this person is not who they voted for. But, for many (a majority in places where it counted), it is the person they voted for. And now, we move forward.
Many articles, think pieces, even books, will be written about this election cycle, looking back at what happened, how the pundits and experts were all wrong, how an inexperienced celebrity turned the entire system on its head. And, we will be tempted to live in this reality of what if, of what happened, of looking back, when we must be looking forward, because the world keeps moving forward.
Gregory Boyle, Jesuit Priest and founder of Homeboy Industries in Los Angeles, writes: “Ours is a God who waits. Who are we not to?”
This simple expression of the reality of God at work in this world, at work in my life, reverberates for me today. The work of God, the work that Christ has left for us, is what Fr. Boyle calls “slow work.” But, even in its lack of speed, it is constantly moving forward, with patience and resilience. And this slow work is precisely what we must focus on as we move forward together as a nation.
Regardless of who you voted for, as followers of Christ we must continue to strive to make life better for all of God’s beloved creation. We must continue to defend the beauty of God’s creation from the over-consumption of man. We must continue to stand up and fight for basic human rights for all God’s people regardless of race, color, ethnicity, sexuality, gender identity, and religion. We must continue to give voice to the voiceless, to hear the oppressed and persecuted, standing with them as the physical presence of Christ in this world today.
And, we must be patient. We must understand that God’s time is most definitely not our time, and in accepting that reality, who are we to be angry that God isn’t moving as fast as we’d like? We must move forward together, knowing that the work of the Church is still here calling to us. Regardless of who is President, the work of the Church has always continued unabated, moving forward, because ultimately we live in a man-made world, into which we hope to bring, little-by-little, pieces of the kingdom of God. This is both the joy and desperation of being of creation. That we don’t always get our way. And even when we do, it does not excuse us from doing the hard work of Christ. Take comfort in the knowledge that Christ is always with us, and that it is through Christ, not through our President or Congress or State Legislators, that we can enact real change in this world.