Friday, December 14, 2012

Turning my democratic cheek :)

I am a democrat, and I have stayed silent regarding the recent political events. Since the election is over, I have decided that I need to say this to my Republican friends and family. You are my friends and family and I love you dearly. I am glad that you have the freedom to say anything you want to say, using whatever medium you choose, whether it be Facebook, twitter, etc. I have stood by and listened to many of you call “democrats” non-Christians, lazy, and living with expectations of entitlements provided by our government. I tried not to let your words hurt my feelings, because I don’t think you would have said that to me specifically, but when you make broad statements about a group of people, you might want to think about who you are including in that statement.

I am a democrat and I am also a Christian, before anything else. My Lord gives me guidelines (aka The Bible) and commandments to let me know how to live according to what is pleasing to him, but he has also given me free will. We are all humans with free will. Free will means choices. We can choose to worship God, or not. We can choose to lie or tell the truth. We can choose to steal from others or work for what we have. We can choose to serve money or God. We can even kill someone, or, choose not to. In the USA our government can enforce punishments for some of these choices, but, at the end of the day, it is the choice itself, not what our government says or does about the choices I make, that determine if I get to heaven. It is my responsibility, as a human being with free will, to live according to my conscience and my beliefs. If you don't believe in pro-choice, if you don't believe that you should take birth control provided by the government, if you don’t believe in using food stamps and welfare, then don't. You have the free will to choose not to. Instead of thinking that if the government would take away these choices, all would be well, how about thinking, you have the free will to TEACH others about the responsibility of abstinence, or how to work for what they have. You also have the free will to decide not to teach them but to let the government take care of it. In this country you have that right. Those who believe contrary to your choices are not non-Christians. They are human beings using their free will to act in accordance to their beliefs. Just like you. The democratic process has given you rights, or free will to choose what is right or wrong for you.

I am a democrat and I am also from a family of hard working democrats. No one can say that my grandparents, parents, and especially my husband (all Democrats) have ever taken an "entitlement" from our government. They worked for everything they owned, and lazy is not a word I would use to describe them. When Mitt Romney told a young person, “if you need money to start a business, ask your parents”, told me all I needed to know to guide my vote. Mr. Romney grew up with a completely different lifestyle than I did and he had no idea that would not have been a viable option in my family. My grandparents specifically, after retirement watched every penny and lived very modestly to be sure that they would have enough money at the end of their lives to pay for their funerals. They actually worried that one of their children might have to bear the burden of their funeral costs. My mother is following in their path. Could Mr. Romney even imagine such a scenario? I believe that a person should work as they are able; however, I also know that the Bible tells us to give and share with those who are poor and less fortunate. The definition of “poor and less fortunate” is different in the eyes of the beholder, I guess. Even God showed us that some will use their talents better than others and the possible consequences of not using them to the best of our abilities. The way I see it though, if food stamps and welfare help one person or family get back on their feet, isn't that what it's all about? Are there abuses in this system? It absolutely appears that way, however, who are we to judge? But for the grace of God, you might someday be in a place where you need help. As the saying goes, if you have not walked in their shoes..........

Lastly, and I'll get off my soapbox, if you are worse off than you were 4 years ago, go back and count your blessings. We are the richest country in the world. Somebody somewhere is worse off than you are. Everything happens for a reason. Maybe you lost your job, because there was something in your life that needed more attention than your job or maybe there was a better opportunity that you would not have seen. Maybe you are bringing home less on your paycheck, because you needed a lesson in humility, or maybe God just wants you to see that you can be happy without material things. The gridlock our government has been in, just might be God speaking. Maybe attempting to teach us how important it is to come together as a country and work for the free will for all people. I don’t know why things happen the way they do, as a Christian I believe that God is in charge. I am human and when things go wrong I want to blame someone or some group too. Use the free will that God gives you and the freedom of choice that the government gives you and live by example. The Lord will bless you and keep you, regardless of what government programs offend you and your sense of religion.