It is mid-afternoon on the day of Decision for America. It was coming on through the morning. Changing numbers told the story. Votes in a number of states were being counted. We would know before the sun set on this historic day.
We lay down to rest after lunch. By the time I awakened the picture had changed. Two more states had been won and Joe Biden would be our new president.
Molly had gone to rake leaves in our daughter Kristen’s yard. She would be in the fresh air, and get exercise. I rose to the mid-afternoon beauty of this lovely fall day. I wanted to write – I suppose to myself. But more to my country. And quietly, to my people. Those I loved. My family. Dear Christian friends. People I know, in the church I care about. The First Congregational Church of Ossipee, NH. My new friends at our northside’s Zion Baptist and Colonial Church, so long served, and loved. Our Covenant Living as a faith community, where we live.
I have a sense of needing to “fix my face.” To think of “what face will I wear to the world?” “What will I ask my heart to say to the world through my face?”
People, according to the radio, were dancing in some parts of the nation’s capital. The President himself was apparently “lingering” over golf. Then back at the White House, his line of cars pulling up to a more obscure entrance. Today would not be a triumphal entry.
I pray for a face of peace, for me. Doing everything I could to let it rise from a heart of love. Love for those who had fought the long political battle, and lost. Knowing that across the country many millions had prayed, and the counters of ballots had labored endless hours to do it right, to serve the nation. God bless ‘em all.
Indeed, “God bless America, the land that I love.” Bless its people everywhere. Today is our day to walk in peace. To shine love. To pray within that every American will pray for every other American.
And pray too, for the beautiful places of America, dear to us – The Boundary Waters Canoe Area. The Rocky Mountains. The shorelines of our great coasts – the beaches of the Pacific, the headlands of the Atlantic, the “Whites” of New Hampshire. The Appalachian Trail. The favorite trails in those mountains that have nurtured our souls. Our own “Ole Man River,” mighty Mississippi. The towns we’ve called home. Portsmouth, Center Ossipee, and Williamsburg, and Newton, and Edina, and now Golden Valley.
They are places of blessing. And the people there have been part of the blessing. And – they are still with me. And I think of them today.
And of those who struggled to come here: my Grandmother Rouner, who lovingly raised my father. And my mother, raised in Lewisburg on her mother’s stories of Burma and Japan where she had been a missionary. And now my cousin who writes to me and says, “We’re the last.”
There are signs of heritage and hope in our grandchildren. They will live with love in their hearts – for us, and for Jesus. May they ever more earnestly seek Him, and be His. And, leave room in their hearts to be Americans, loving their country.
As I go out in days ahead, I go glad for heritage, for country, and most of all for faith-walking as I can, with Jesus, and returning still as He “walks with me, and talks with me, and tells me I am His own.”
Bless you all as a new, and surely interesting, chapter begins.
Arthur A Rouner, Jr -
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ARTHUR ROUNER MINISTRIES