Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Special Election Day Guest Post

It's Election Day! Big Day here in the Thomas House. My real interest in politics came during my addictive viewing of the West Wing. What?! You haven't watched the whole series? Go watch it - it's SO Good. Anyway, since watching 7 seasons on DVD in a relatively short amount of time, I've been addicted to the Race, the Hype, the Spin.

And, tonight, it's over.
But, today, we celebrate where we've come and today's post does just that. It's by my handsome husband. And, did you know there is so much more to him than his good looks? Read on, and enjoy. (Oh, and since it's never too early to start a campaign these days, and since Ben has a secret ambition to be the president despite my very controversial beliefs that one cannot both follow Christ the way He asks us to and lead the United States of America, get ready to vote Thomas 2020! How's that for a loaded run-on sentence?)


I am the son of two immigrants from India. My parents emigrated to this country in the early seventies in hope of securing a better future for themselves, but mainly for their children. I was born in Brooklyn and then moved to Long Island. I grew up in a very middle class neighborhood, school and community. Often times, my brother and I, and our Indian friends were the only ones around that looked different.
We have always been proud to be Americans. This country has given us opportunities that our parents never even dreamed about. Opportunities for education, employment, and the ability to live in a safe and secure country. These were things our parents had to fight hard for and we enjoy just by being Americans. We are proud to be Americans. We are humbled that we have been given this chance, when we see our cousins in India who still struggle and aren’t afforded the opportunities we have been given.
We were aware, even at a very young age, that there were certain things that were possible in this country and certain things that were not. It was possible for our parents, who mainly come from small villages in southern India to make a great living for themselves. It was possible for us to ensure a great and secure future in this wonderful country. It was possible for us to be treated as equals in many respects to our classmates. It was possible for us to work hard and achieve anything we wanted, well almost anything.
But there was always that word: almost. Always that qualifier: in many respects. Because there was always the gap between my possibilities and the possibilities that existed for others.
That’s why today marks an even greater level of pride in my country.
Today, the doors of America swing wide open again. Regardless of your political leanings or church affiliations, the glass ceilings that were left in this country are being shattered. You have an African-American male running for the highest office in the land. You have a former POW who has served his country honorably and in the most sacrificial way. You have a Caucasian woman, who is a hockey mom, small-town mayor and governor running as a vice presidential candidate.

Today, we are reminded yet again that we are all created in God’s image, with His design determining our possibilities. This is a truth we have heard from the time we first went to Sunday School. It was a truth we were reminded of as we learned about the Constitution. And yet, there were other truths that reminded us that maybe we weren’t there yet in this country. Today, that changes. Today, regardless of whom you are voting for and how you feel about each candidate, today we remember we are created in God’s image. Male, female, black, white, Indian. We are God’s people, created in His image. Regardless of gender, race, religion, ethnicity, we take a huge step forward to realizing God created us all to be equally honored children of the King.

So, as you go to the voting booth today and you wait up all night to see who our next President is, remind yourself of a few truths. You were created in God’s image. You can tell your kids that all things are possible. There is nothing that cannot be accomplished. If your son or daughter wants to be a doctor, lawyer, missionary, engineer or President, it is possible. I have been an American for 30 years. I have been fighting tears since last night and all morning as I realize this truth is finally here.

And here's a little West Wing love:

4 comments:

Dad said...

I am proud of my kids, and am humbled by the grace God has shed upon each one. Thanks for your testimony of grace and your continuing commitment to be broken and used by Him.

kristymcclellan said...

Thanks Ben for that reminder. I am very passionate about my political views and have somewhat been consumed by them lately. It's nice to be reminded of how fortunate we are to be living in America but also that no matter where God has us, we are all His children and He is in control!

Kristin said...

Thanks Ben and Susie for sharing your political hearts. Thanks also for sharing a little "West Wing". Both thins would have made Ryan smile today!

Natalie4Paws said...

Ben,
WOW, I am so encouraged by your thoughts. I have been so discouraged by many Christians who have not been able to see some of the real things about this election. You hit the nail on the head and I am relishing the making of history and it's impact on the world today.

Blessings,

Natalie