There have been several times in my life when earth-shattering, foundation-shaking events have caused me to reassess everything I do and believe. While on one hand, they are exhilarating experiences because they seem to open up a whole new world of knowledge previously unknown to me, on the other hand, I can no longer act with impunity nor feign ignorance as an excuse for doing the wrong thing. As an interesting aside, these kinds of experiences also seem to influence how I judge others when trying to decide what kind of person they are or where they are in their life's journey.
The process of moving from being a pretty classic low-info voter to becoming a flaming RedState conservative has been one of those kinds of events for me. It slowly began its evolution immediately after Obama was elected the first time in 2008. I was one of those people who knew our country was making a huge mistake. I was physically ill for three days because I saw the kind of man Obama was right away. No doubt the physical reaction was an omen for the hell that would surely lay ahead.
Fast forward to 2014 and boy, have I come a long way, baby! In His infinite mercy, as I was seeking how to become a high-info voter, the Lord eventually led me to RedState for my new education on all things political.
Now, a mere three and a half years later, I'm not sure who -- or what -- I've become.
While I can definitely say I am no longer naive regarding just how wicked politics are, I'm still not sure all of this knowledge is making me a better person. For those of you who can boast that you have never been a naive, low-info voter, perhaps you really don't realize how blissful life can be when one is not measuring everything (and everyone) with a political yardstick.
The temptation to return to the pew and stay there is ever before me. I think that has something to do with the difference between the two kingdoms -- as I understand them. In the kingdom of God, sin is sin. There is no Democrat sin or Republican sin (although I used to think Republican sin wasn't as bad as Democrat sin...now, not so much); no Protestant sin or Catholic sin. Nor are we encouraged to hold grudges, do opposition research on new believers, or constantly remind God of all their sins before we can endorse them.
This was a huge deal for me when I first became a Christian. I came from a family environment that was very critical, judgmental and unforgiving. Personally, this had a devastating effect on me growing up because words are powerful things, and the criticism and harsh judgment I endured from family members became like lies about me that I had internalized. God had to do a deep work in me to heal all of that so I could forgive myself, receive His passionate love for me and in turn, extend the same to others.
The kingdom of politics seems to be unraveling everything I learned because as surely as the sun rises, I feel justified to boldly criticize, judge and condemn all of these politicians who seem to crawl up out of hell itself in order to gain political power and money -- as well as inflict pure misery on the people they are supposed to represent.
I'm not sure this is good for me. Could this be a sign that I have matured enough in God's eyes to handle this kind of judgment? Your thoughts, please.
The Watercooler is always an open thread.