Heating up or cooling down?
When French aristocrat Alexis de Tocqueville warned of The Crisis of the Election in his classic work Democracy in America he could not have envisioned our nation one hundred and eighty five years later. The America he knew was smaller, simpler, and less diverse. He complimented our government systems and experience with elections in our short national history. Later he mentioned the calm that typically followed our election and voting processes. Note his description of elections in his day---
As the election draws near, intrigues multiply and turmoil spreads. Citizens divide up between several camps each of which adopts the name of its candidate. The whole nation descends into a feverish state; the election becomes the daily theme of newspapers, the subject of private conversations, the object of every maneuver and every thought, the only concern of the present moment.
It is true that as soon as the result has been announced, the passion is dispelled, all returns to calm, and the river which momentarily overflowed its banks returns peaceably to its bed. But should we not find it astonishing that such a storm should have arisen in the first place?
Democracy in America, Penguin Books, 2003.
He didn't mention the the anticipation among American citizens as they awaited the results of their vote. It must have been a slower, more prodding process considering the distance of voting places and simplicity of communication systems. He also didn't write about the impatience of the American people. Evidently their voting and reporting mechanics were an expected delay. Waiting was not recorded as a crisis of the election. That was then and this is now.
Now we wait. And, in these exponential times, waiting is not our best virtue. My question right now, while we anticipate the vote counts in many states, will this wait be a heating up or cooling down of our passions? Will this wait further aggravate the special interest groups that prefer one of the political parties, or will the heat of the election further inflame their interests?
Once again, the Christian worldview advises and expects patience as the final totals are gathered and the winners are announced. Underneath these questions is the spiritual ideal of God's Sovereign leadership and direction of all things. Surely Scripture teaches us the value of waiting. Several examples---
But they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with
wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
Isaiah 40: 31, ESV
The Lord is good to those who wait for him, to the soul who seeks him.
Lamentations 3: 25, ESV
But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.
Romans 8: 25, ESV
For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness.
Galatians 5: 5, ESV
Everyone who knows me further knows my personal wait problem. These days of abiding until the final results of Election 2020 are published is a test of my observance and belief of this Christian worldview. My prayer in these days of waiting is that these will be days of cooling down rather than heating up among those with such stark and diverse political expectations. Our Sovereign God will reveal these results. A personal guide in this waiting ordeal is 1 Peter 5:6: "Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you." It doesn't translate to me that my preferences will be be the ones announced. Rather, it affirms that when I am humble he will reveal the outcomes at the right time.
Therefore, cooling down will be my goal rather than heating up. And yours?