After tonight our country will be different.
How different depends on the outcome of the election, but it will be different regardless of which way the election goes.
I am also aware that the election might not be completely decided by tonight--but that doesn't matter either. After tonight things will be different.
I find myself thinking about the various scenarios that may occur, depending on which candidate for president prevails. I also find myself going to some dark places in the midst of those thoughts.
The fact that this is the first time in my adult life that I am actually considering the possibility of riots, violence, and destruction following a presidential election says a lot about the state of my own mind.
And the state of our current culture...
I also find myself speaking these words--a quote from St. Julian of Norwich---out loud or in my head: All will be well... all will be well... and all manner of things will be well.
I speak these words... I think them... because I want to live in the hope of them. I am not feeling it at the moment, to be honest. So I say the words and hope that I might feel confident that all will, in fact, be well---no matter what happens.
I feel like this needs to be said...
This election, like no other, has highlighted very clearly that there are very different ways of seeing the world.
I feel like it comes down to these two points of view: scarcity vs. plenty.
In other words, when you look out into the world around you, do you see it through a lens that is distorted by lack, scarcity, fear, smallness, and distrust?
Or do you see the world through a lens of abundance, plenty, hope, generosity, love, and confidence?
Fr. Richard Rohr once wrote: We become what we are willing to see.
That is such a hard truth, isn't it?
Who you really are as a person largely depends on the lens you choose, and what you are willing to see through that lens. If you choose the lens of scarcity then there will always be fear, dread, anger, bitterness, envy, and strife ahead of you.
But if you choose to see the world through the lens of abundance and plenty, you will find hope, joy, fulfillment, contentment, and most of all peace in your life's journey.
The outcome of this election will be what it will be. But I do fear what it has done to the soul of our country, and to us. I fear that we have become what we are willing to see, and what we see has been distorted by a spirit of scarcity.
As I said earlier, things will change after tonight.
And it will be up to us how we respond to those changes. It will be up to us whether we continue looking through the same tired, old lenses that keep us seeing blurry visions of a future where there never seems to be enough for us...
Or we swap those old lenses out for new ones that will give us a clear view of a future where Jesus is already working, making all things new... where there is a spirit of abundance... where there is enough for everyone.
It's up to us how we respond to what happens after tonight. It's up to us how we view the world. It's up to us to live into the abundant hope of these words...
All will be well... all will be well... and all manner of things will be well...
May the grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you now and always. Amen.