God Bless America!

As we enjoy the festival of light outside our window tonight, we also enjoy this stunning performance of “God Bless America” by Celine Dion.

Yes, Lord, please bless this country.  Help us to find our way home to you.

God Squeaks By, Wins a Spot on Democratic Platform

The Democratic Platform Committee has just made room for God in their official party platform—but it was a close call! 

Until today, it appeared as though the Dems had rejected the Holy Spirit’s prompting to include Him in matters of state; but in what has been described as a “very close” voice vote, and at the urging of President Obama, the Democratic Party allowed the name of God in after all.

The first amendment to the Platform, which was introduced by former Ohio Governor and former Methodist minister Ted Strickland, restored the language of the 2008 party platform, which said,

“We need a government that stands up for the hopes, values and interests of working people, and gives everyone willing to work hard the chance to make the most of their God-given potential.” 

(The Republican Party Platform, conversely, mentions God twelve times.)

The second “controversial” amendment was an acknowledgement that Jerusalem is, in fact, the capital of Israel. 

And when it was announced that the two amendments had passed, loud boo’s could be heard from throughout the Convention Hall.

*     *     *     *     *

Thinking today about the Democrats’ resistance to acknowledging the Creator, I was reminded of a poem I memorized back in high school.  The poem was called “Outwitted” and was written by the poet laureate of Oregon, Edwin Markham. 

Markham was born a Methodist but fell away from his faith, embracing a vague spiritualism.  Given his loose association with traditional Christianity, I can’t say whether Markham intended his short poem as a reflection on God; but the rich imagery is evocative of faith, and it seems likely to me that the capitalized “Love” is, in fact, God Himself.

Here is the poem as I remember it.

Outwitted by Edwin Markham

He drew a circle that shut me out —
Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout.
But Love and I had the wit to win:
We drew a circle that took him in.

So to those Democrats who gathered this week in Charlotte, and who opposed the inclusion of God in their public statement of purpose: 

You may have rejected God, but God has not rejected you. 

He waits.