Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Happy Inauguration Day!

Watching Barack Obama being sworn in as the 44th President of the United States reminded me of how we feel when a new coach is hired to lead a beleaguered sports team, or when a difficult boss is replaced by a new one. Waves of hope and optimism wash over us, exploding with great expectations.

Levels of hope and optimism for the new President may be predicated by political leanings – higher for those leaning liberally, lower for those conservatively constrained – but without question, given recent national and global events, change was overdue.

But is Barack Obama the right change agent? He passes the look test: Impressive appearance, powerful orator, persuasive personality. Only time will reveal whether those outward traits rightly reflect inward leadership capabilities.

In the face of myriad economic, social, security and international challenges, will President Obama muster the integrity, courage, wisdom, compassion, boldness and humility required to prove being a leader worth following?

All Americans should desire to see him succeed – for the sake of the United States and the world it influences so greatly. How can we help?

There are many options –action committees, volunteer work, writing letters, calling legislators, etc. But first, according to the Bible, we should pray: “I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made foe everyone – for kings and all those in authority…” (1 Timothy 2:2).

The Scriptures also say, whether we voted for Obama or not, we should offer our support: “Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established…. For he is God’s servant to do you good…” (Romans 13:1-5). So let’s not only hope, but also pray, that President Obama will prove to be the kind of leader our nation – and the world – need.

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