They say grief has several stages: shock/disbelief, denial, bargaining, guilt, anger, depression, and acceptance/hope. I stood in shock for most of the day on Wednesday, 11/09/2016. Found myself in mourning- mourning the loss of the America I hoped for, in the face of the America that is. I still find it hard to believe the next President of the allegedly United States is a xenophobic, fear-mongering, dog-whistling, erratic, divisive, reality TV star. This is who will have access to top-secret information and undercover operations? How did this happen? Who pulled the trigger against our progress? Who, what, when, where, why, and how? The rationale is beyond reason.
Reality is, roughly 46.6% of eligible registered voters didn’t vote in this election. Reality is, Hillary Clinton won the popular vote with more than 2,500,000* votes over Trump. Reality is, despite mainstream media, hate speeches, zero experience, and mass un-appeal, Donald Trump won the electorate. Reality is, our faux democracy and single-issue hypocrisy got us where we are today. And that’s disheartening.
So I wasn’t just shocked that Clinton lost. I was shocked she was trumped by The Donald. Mr. Grab ‘Em By the P@&&¥. Mr. Flip Flop on the Issues. The man without a plan. Don’t even get me started on his bigoted, racist rhetoric. And nearly half of Tuesdays voters pressed the green button for him? Seventy percent of white voters elected him? It’s angering and eye-opening at the same time. The fact that over 60 million adults voted for this highly unqualified, unpresidential, uncouth, cyber bully… seriously? And President Barak Obama has to pass the baton to him??? Lord have mercy.
Needless to say, I know I’m not alone in this election distress. America has been deplorably divided and racially charged these past few days. And it’s out of control. It’s like we’ve been walking in the valley of the shadow of death, fearing the evil of the impending Trump administration. But I am reminded not to be afraid of the shadow. Not to be distracted by hypotheticals and worst-case scenarios. God is with us in the valley and He alone will escort us to a higher place.
I am shocked but not surprised.
Disappointed but not disenfranchised.
I still have power because I still have God. He’s the same yesterday, today, and forever more. America may appear to be in a dark place right now, but God is shining His Light on her deficiencies so we can see His strength. Let’s turn to Him to be made whole. Yes, the mourning is real. And yes, the struggle is real. But God is no less real in our grief than He is in our gladness. Let’s not lose the perspective of His position just because things didn’t go as planned.
Yes, Trump was elected President. But that position has an expiration date. Let’s work while we wait and practice while we pray. Let’s not stop living, loving, moving and shaking. Let’s hold our elected officials accountable and let go of our own electoral laziness. Let’s build upon foundations of faith and break down the temptation to treat others with the very hate we despise. Let’s be the change we wish to see in the world.
Time doesn’t heal all wounds; it’s what we do with it that makes a difference. Let’s all do better. Let’s turn our sorrow into good grief.
*Updated 12/03/16 to reflect current election results.