IMG_8898“But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ,”

Philippians 3:20

 

I am certain that the events of election night affected each of our people at the Cathedral very differently, even if we are all pretty bleary-eyed after staying up too late. For some there is a sense of satisfaction. For others there is a sense of uncertainty. For still others there is elation. For others there is foreboding fear. Perhaps this is the case after any election, but this election seems to have produced more acute feelings than any I can remember. Regardless of how we are feeling this morning, however, I assert that which is most essential has not changed. Regardless of where our votes were cast, our King was inaugurated long before this campaign ever started. As Paul reminded the Christians in Philippi, “our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.” So, what difference does having an ultimate transcendent citizenship make for our lives as earthly citizens of the United States of America?

Having a heavenly citizenship allows us to avoid the polar postures of triumphalism on the one hand, and nihilism on the other. It allows us to unequivocally pray for President-elect Trump in his victory and pray for Secretary Clinton in her defeat. Just as we have prayed for President Obama throughout his time in office, we will, without hesitation, pray for President Trump after his inauguration just as we would have prayed for Secretary Clinton had she won the election. We must pray for and meaningfully aid President-elect Trump in “binding the wounds of division” as he put it in his conciliatory victory speech. As citizens of heaven we can have the eyes of our hearts opened to the very real pain and fear that people are feeling in many parts of our country. I received a message this morning from a friend who is a teacher asking for my prayers as she had genuinely frightened African American and Muslim children weeping in her arms today at school. Our call as citizens of heaven is to have open arms of love and compassion like my friend and to work tirelessly on our knees and in the civic square to make sure that their fears are not realized. As citizens of heaven, we are free to celebrate and magnify that which is good, and to rebuke and stand against that which is evil, regardless of which political party or politician is before us. As citizens of heaven, we know full well that all authority on earth comes under the sovereign authority of Almighty God. As citizens of heaven, we are rooted in a great and glorious truth that Christ Jesus our redeemer lives and his Spirit is within us, bearing the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

Finally, let us remember that ours is a diverse body here at the Cathedral. I trust that we are united by the truth of the Gospel and our common identity as sons and daughters of God, but even still, we can all prayerfully and thoughtfully consider our vote and have it land in different ballot boxes. Let us not assume we know the heart of any other person based on how he or she voted. Never forget we are to love one another and by our love for one another the world will know that we are Christ’s disciples. Let us take time with one another and fulfill the admonition of Saint James and “let every person be quick to listen, slow to speak, slow to anger; for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness that God requires.”

This is an historic day, whether we feel excited or apprehensive. Regardless, we must be God’s heart for the heart of our city, our state, and our nation as the best earthly citizens we can be knowing that this is possible because ultimately, “our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ.”

 

Peace in Christ Jesus,

Peet+