Donald Trump calls himself a Christian. I feel sick. I watch fellow Christians fall for it. What is it about that man that appeals to the Christian Right? Or Christians of any kind? Oh yeah, that’s right. He campaigned to feed fears and self-righteousness. It worked.
It’s clear that Christian Americans came out last night and took part in voting Donald Trump into (more) power. Despite flapping his arms in mockery of the disabled, talking about grabbing women by the pussy and calling all Mexicans rapists…despite this and so much more, we filled in the vacant space next to that man’s name and gave his ego all it needed to reign, disregarding counsel, because he says he doesn’t need that. Here will sit a man who refuses to own mistakes, nothing to apologize for, he says.
At the heart of every narcissist is the inability to apologize or accept even the best advice.
So now we’ve done this. He is seated, as inexperienced as he may be, with the power he craves.
I keep thinking, Pharisee or Disciple. Pick one.
Watching the numbers come in last night, I saw all the Facebook posts about trying to get booze to ease the pain. We are good at numbing and avoidance, of desperately reacting to stress and angst. Nothing works, really. Nothing but begging the good holy heavens above for just a slice of peace, alongside the slice of pizza or the slice of cake or the cocktail. With the glug of the bottle comes little solace, I’ve learned. Same with cake. But begging prayers and surrounding yourself with people who love well, that works. (Please do that today. Try not to isolate. Isolation has really screwed us. So many have been fed an Above Others mentality when grouped together and then we live in our heads–a dangerous place–most of the time, alone, feeding the beast of Self and fear and I Am Right. That’s how Donald Trump became President, because it felt safer to have a Pharisee in the oval.)
Most definitions and translations of the word Pharisee include the word SEPARATE. A Pharisee was one that believed they were set apart but not beside, above. They thought they were the only true followers of the law, ascended above others by their morality. Basically, Pharisees were the self-righteous judgment-holding arrogant finger-pointers. They saw fellow humans who didn’t live as they did as Other. Below. Pharisees believed in their own powerful leadership. God’s heart-gut leading need not apply.
Most definitions and translations of the word Disciple include the word FOLLOW. It means emulating a leader, and being challenged as a student to learn by example. Humility must exist to follow, of course. Christ’s disciples were eccentric and radical and the Pharisees didn’t like them. They weren’t Religious. They were learning what it meant to hear God speak in love and with grace, always grace.
You get the idea. The Pharisees were Religion. Christ and his disciples were not.
I keep thinking, Pharisees or Disciples? Pick one.
I will not live out an unhealthy obsession with politics, or my country, and I will not live in fear and judgment while using the name of Christ. I will fight to not flee into a bottle or a cake, to isolation under the comforter on my bed. (Okay, I may take some time there, but I will get up.)
Most importantly, I will finally (I admit I have not done enough) be more defiantly protective of my brothers and sisters that don’t fit the Christian Nation mold. Clearly, I have not been doing enough. We have not been doing enough.
(Oh God, have mercy.)
Christians have done enough damage with the (even subconscious) idea that We are The People, the first and best, the ones who are right. Christians have done enough to protect their own–their own beliefs, perspectives and money and right to Fear. Facing that our entire belief system got totally jacked up somewhere along the way is hard work, but I’m asking my fellow Christians, who differ from me a whole lot, to please take a good hard look…
Pharisee or Disciple? Pick One.
This happened, Donald Trump became our President last night, because we have twisted and eroded the gospel for so long we can’t even admit it anymore–it’s just normal, it’s just okay–because it feels safer to protect it in fear and call this a Christian Nation and align ourselves with a Pharisee. It feels safer, but only for us. I don’t want your safety, it comes with too high a price.
As a believer, I’m devastated at how successful he (Trump) has been in pandering to our lowest, basest selves. The selves that are willing to be openly racist. The selves that are afraid of anybody that does not fit our demographic. The selves that close our arms and our hearts to victims and vulnerable people. He’s run on a platform of fear and othering, and it has been a study in precision, because it’s worked. He has exposed the darkest corners of our human hearts and then given them free reign to live out in the open. That scares me. – Jen Hatmaker