Obama

January 27, 2009 at 4:00 pm Leave a comment

Last Tuesday I was wrestling with my computer, not God. I was sitting outside of the library in the ritzy clubhouse of the Glen Lakes community where we are staying for January; there to take advantage of the good Wi-Fi signal in an attempt to make a call or two with a new Internet telephone gadget I bought. The battle was long and I eventually lost. The device seems to have developed Alzheimer’s and my trusty computer seems to have come down with debilitating arthritis. How stressful.

A few short paces away, in the library, a group had assembled around the TV nestled in the corner. They were watching the inauguration of President Barak Obama. I carried on with my computer battle but kept an ear on the speeches and the reactions of those assembled in the library. As Obama spoke there was rapt silence. Everyone was glued to the transmission of this momentous event. I was impressed. I don’t think a similar group of Canadians would have assembled for such a happening in the first place and if so they definitely would not have been spell bound. Through those golden moments, I gained respect for the American political ideal. These people honestly and humbly held their political system dear to their hearts and were sensing reward for their dedication. Canadians, in contrast, seem to regard our system as a necessary annoyance. I wished that we had the heart felt passion for government that this group displayed. Perhaps Canadians do need more passion; to become more than gray.

Since we have no TV in the house where we are living, and my computer is very dodgy, I haven’t been able to see any replays of the main speech but it sounded like a wonderful work of rhetoric. When I heard, “If you will open your fist, we will extend our hand,” I believed a new day was dawning. A Canadian political leader uttering those same words would have nowhere near the impact or import of Obama saying those words. There was a feeling of history being made. I sensed greatness. I will find the inaugural speech somewhere and study it.

When the speech ended the group in the library actually applauded. As they filed past me, some wiping tears from their eyes, I caught a lady’s eye and said, “A new day has dawned.” She smiled and said, “I hope so.”

The ancient Hebrews relied on their leadership from God. They waited for a figure to step up, or be raised up to provide leadership whenever a threatening situation arose. Naturally leadership was inconsistent in these instances and the people desired a dedicated leader. According to the bible story, God reluctantly agreed to let the people choose their own leader: a king. The leader they chose was Saul, who was not a good leader. Next they chose (with divine help) David who was the greatest leader the united nations of Judah and Israel ever had. Whether or not David in all of his flawed humanity ever existed, he stands as a symbol of great leadership. The honeymoon is on for Obama but I’m sure flaws, eked out by his opponents will come to light. Have we learned that no one is squeaky clean? Can’t we accept that we are all flawed as was the great David?

Barak Obama has arrived on the scene when our American friends desperately need someone to restore their aura in the world. Is Obama someone that has been raised up for this particular challenge or is he maybe the American David? Either way, may he be successful in facing the challenge.

Obama’s election triggered an avalanche of hope around the world. As I was packing up my stubborn computer in defeat that day, I felt that the world’s hope had begun to be realized. Like that lady passing by me, dabbing her eyes: I hope so.

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Entry filed under: Wrestling With God.

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