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How Do Religious Conservatives Square It With God When A Praying Man Is Maligned?

August 5, 2020

At the end of the day, there is only one question to ask after Fox News is turned off, Rush Limbaugh is silenced, and the calm of night falls over the homes of American Christians who support Donald Trump.  Just how do they square their day with God?

I ask the question not in a snarky way, or one that is aimed for raw-meat politics.  I am most sincere in my desire to understand the ability of people who compartmentalize their support of Trump, a person sitting in the Oval Office who continuously demonstrates his disdain for the lessons of the Bible.  Those Trump supporters then tout themselves as Christians.

While we all fall short of the ideals–that being the human condition–there is an enormous chasm between the lies, boastful nature, meanness, and divisiveness that Trump contains as a man and then the call of faith which encourages us to model our lives on loftier sights.

This week comes another glaring example of what I am talking about with Trump, and there is no doubt a great many Christians will just grin, nod, and agree with the one they have sided with.

A new Trump campaign ad released on Wednesday contains a number of altered or edited images of former vice president Joe Biden.  News reporters from The Washington Post, CNN, and other news outlets have called out the distortions and lies.  I would hope some of the Christian base would do the same.

The most despicable part of the ad is an altered image of Biden praying at church.  The aim of the photo was to make him appear as old and defeated when in reality it is Biden praying on June 1st at the Bethel AME church.  The photo was taken by an AP photographer.

biden-praying-4

Trump’s ad is an affront to religious people and I find it personally offensive.  I could venture here into how its use underscores the desperation of his campaign. But the point of this post is not to take that path.  I am just taken aback how anyone who claims life of faith can sit still and accept what Trump is doing for the single selfish purpose of his re-election.

In the opening pages of my book, Walking Up The Ramp I wrote the following.  I would hope and trust that at least some Trump supporters might ponder the words and reflect on what they are doing in being silent as Trump undermines even the personal space of a praying man.

Out on our lawn, sitting in one of those three New England-blue Adirondack chairs, I often repeat to myself a silent prayer, the same prayer with which upon waking I start out each day:

Dear God, thank you for this day.
Thank you for my life;
Thank you for letting me be alive;
Thank you for letting me live life.
Walk with me today and plant my feet
In the path you would have me take.
Let me be a light for others.

I often write of the new basements we hit as a nation on the slippery slope our society too often embraces.  But this one is all the more troubling as the ones who sit in the pews and make the most of their religion are the ones who will stay silent when a praying man is used in such a disgusting partisan manner.

And so it goes.

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