I am thankful that at the very last moment the Congress and President of the USA recently passed the law necessary to keep the nation from defaulting on its debt payments. I understand that if this default took place it would have had dire consequences for the world in general and for you and me specifically. So the hopes of many, including myself, were fulfilled.
The law was passed and everything would be okay. But everything is not okay. No sooner was the law adopted, than our government leaders began blaming each other for its shortcomings. Then they all left Washington for a month of vacation and/or fund raising for their upcoming election campaigns. But you can be sure that when they return, and continuing at least until the November 2012 election, we will see and hear more and more of the blame game.
My hope is that they will at the same time work toward a solution to our national financial problems. But it’s hard to hold on to hope in times and situations like these. It isn’t just the government leaders who make it difficult to hold on to hope. It’s also the news media, as they report and analyze the situation. They remind us over and over again that we are in a hopeless crisis. Every night they tell us about the disastrous consequences we can expect. Interest rates will rise, so we won’t be able to buy homes, cars, or college loans. Our retirement funds will disappear. The nation will be going into a deeper than ever recession.
I have come to believe that the news media executives celebrate joyfully whenever there is bad news to report. I have no problem with reporting bad news. The public should be aware of the bad news in the world, but my observation is that they seem to thrive on making everything a crisis. And prolonging the crisis atmosphere, even when the crisis is past. They seem to think that their job is to not just inform and report, but to scare and even terrify the listeners.
Yes, even as the news media encourage and prolong a crisis atmosphere, I do believe they want to be seen as offering hope for solutions. One way they are doing this in the current financial “crisisis” is to have their “experts” tell us what to do to get through it all. They give us all kinds of advice ranging from clipping coupons to staying in or getting out of the stock market.
Recently I heard the suggestion that the way to deal with our present financial situation is to demonstrate patriotism. “Have faith in America. We always work our way out of our problems”. I have also heard this from our government leaders.
So what’s wrong with having faith in Amercia? Nothing. I personally have faith in America. But I also know that faith in America is an incomplete answer to finding hope. Whether it’s a financial issue, natural disaster, war, crime, or any kind of social issue, I believe Americans need to have faith in the United States of America. But we also need to have faith in the God who created this nation as one in which its people (you and me) could pursue “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”. A nation which God created to be a beacon of hope to its own people and to the world. I don’t know about you, but as for me, without faith in God I don’t think I could have faith in America.
As I said, it’s hard to hold on to hope in times and situations like these. But then I read in the Bible (Matthew 6:25-34) that Jesus tells us not to worry. Instead, focus on living in accordance with God’s will , which can be summarized as – love God and love each other (Matthew 22:34-40). I believe God is the source of our hope, no matter how bad the situation. Despite the failures of our government leaders, our news media, and each one of us, I still have hope. I have hope because my reading of history and my own personal experience is that even before there was a United States of America, God was blessing America. Therefore, I have hope that God will assure that the USA will continue to be in the process of becoming the nation God created us to be. And I expect that hope to be fulfilled. How about you?