An Election-Day Letter from a Post-Church Refugee

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Hi.

It's been a while since we've talked, so I thought I'd drop you a line to catch up. Today has been exciting - a big turn out at the polling places and precincts. So much energy in the air, I almost felt as if I was connected to something living and fantastic! Even in my discontent, I think I can join with you to say "thank God for the gift of democracy!"

That leads me to a big part of why I'm writing. I'm a little discouraged these days hearing from others that you may think I'm in a faith crisis because of my politics? That I've fallen away from what is true? Or more painful yet, that I've lost my love for God? Perhaps they're just rumors, so I wanted to clear the air. There's enough that you and I are working through together to let this get in the way.

I guess you've been on my mind a bit lately because this whole election craziness has dredged up some issues that reminded me of our old times together - and also some of what ultimately pulled us apart.

To see two women become possibilities for executive office here in the U.S. has been invigorating! It has caused some currents in the bigger world out there but also reminded me of so many conversations we've had about the role of women in leadership. I don't think it's a secret between us that I've created space in our relationship to rediscover how God designed me to lead and innovate outside of the categories you thought I had to stay inside of. I wonder how you're feeling about this new political possibility? Probably the real question I'm asking is, how do you feel about me?

I had to cast a vote today for legislation that will affect the poor and the struggling. Perhaps we won't agree on the "who's" and the "how's" but perhaps we can agree that the suffering needs to be relieved? I admit to you that when I left, I was convinced that you were more adamant about the causes than the people they affected. Perhaps I was a bit rash on that judgment, but I'm hoping that we can work together in the future on what we both believe is Christ's compassion for the world. I resent what feels like your judgment, but am just as guilty, I suppose. I wonder how we meet in the middle on this?

In the time that's passed since we separated, I've started to miss the connection and the feeling of safety that I had when we were together every day. At the same time, I've discovered more about God and about myself as a child of God then I knew was possible before. I guess I'm writing in the hopes that you will acknowledge my decisions today as a vote from my conscience, borne from my own love of God, and from my conviction of who Christ is and where he's working in the world. I will extend you the same grace. I don't want to get into a game of name calling and character slashing - we are still family, and that I know in the deepest parts of me even if you've maybe made up your mind that I'm good as gone.

November04, 2008 at 12:00 PM

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