Ten Commandments

Dear President Trump.  I understand you are now supporting and believing Roy Moore after campaigning against him.  If he loses, you may lose politically, Big Time.  You, of course, know what it is to be accused of things you have bragged about, and later deny them… and expect to be believed.  At least now, many of Roy Moore’s and your supporters are coming clean about their ignoring immorality and cruelty towards women for political expediency.  As a Christian, my President and my enemy, you of all people should be familiar with the Ten Commandments Mr. Moore espouses so energetically.  You are, I assume, familiar with the rules of our faith that include, no worship of idols, no covetousness, no bearing false witness and that biggie for so many people no adultery.  There are others we can cover later, but let’s not lose our focus.  You appear to be compromising your Christian morals for political advantage.  I pray this is not so.  I pray you have a shred of integrity left.  I pray your Christian morals prevail over your greed and desire for power and adulation.  Simply put, I pray you do the right thing.  Rest assured, God loves you.  That does not mean God approves of your evil, bullying ways.

The Cows of Bashan

Dear President Trump.  As my enemy and a fellow Christian, let’s talk bible for a minute.  Ever hear of the ‘Cows of Bashan.’  Amos talks about them.  He was a prophet.  He castigated the “C of B” for oppressing the poor and crushing the needy, all to make themselves rich and comfortable.  Their particular hypocrisy was claiming purity and innocence because all of their cruelty towards others was done by underlings and spouses and representatives.  They claimed to be Godly while doing the ugliest things by proxy.  I think the 1% of richest Americans are the modern ‘Cows of Bashan.’  “They sell the innocent for silver, and the needy for a pair of shoes.”  “They trample on the heads of the poor.”  “…(they) turn justice into bitterness and cast righteousness to the ground…and detest the one who tells the truth.”  With Amos, let us pray, “let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever flowing stream.” I know I’m getting a little preachy here.  But it’s the price we pay as we struggle to love one another… to call each other to account… to love God and ourselves and each other.  Pray with me Mr. President… for all our sakes.

Suggs and Starbuck

Dear President Trump.  Do the names Suggs and Starbuck mean anything to you.  They both went to prison in Alabama for soliciting sex from 14 year olds.  Sound familiar?  But Roy Moore did not convict them and put them in prison.  The Democratic candidate for Senate, Doug Jones, did.  Strange my enemy, how our words come back to bite us.  Who’s soft on crime??? The candidate you support, accused of multiple sexual offenses, or the prosecutor who put sex offenders behind bars?  Love is such a tough word.  It can lead us to amazing levels of bliss.  It can turn us into greedy lovers of money, sex and power.  It can bind us to a God of justice, forgiveness and grace.  Sometimes, my enemy, we have to choose, good or evil, profit or compassion, the God you say you follow, or the gods your actions tell us you truly love and worship.  Joshua said it eloquently when he confronted an apostate Israel… “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”  I pray you will too.

First Nation Critique

Dear President Trump.  Careless.  Ignorant.  Reckless.  Offensive.  Dangerous.  Damaging. Inappropriate.  Prejudiced.  Discriminatory.  Pandering.  False.  Immature.  Short sighted.  Wow Mr. President.  What in heavens name did you do to enrage the Navajo Nation?  In one letter they called you all these things.  Oh yeah.  You used a racial slur at a meeting honoring Indigenous peoples, calling a U.S. Senator, Pocahontas.  Not for the first time, you bully others to prove your own superiority.  My enemy, as a Christian do you even read the bible?  Do you remember the part about patience, kindness, not jealous or boastful, not arrogant or rude, Not insisting on your own way.  Not rejoicing in the wrong but rejoicing in the right..  Read your bible more.  Pray more.  I pray you spend more time with these Indigenous peoples. I pray they would teach you many things.  I pray you learn how not to be a bully. It’s the best I can do right now.  I really am not good at this ‘loving my enemy thing.’

Confessing Church

Dear President Trump. Loving you is getting harder and harder every day. Even the attempt is becoming the most depressing part of my life. Ever hear of the ‘Confessing Church?’ A group of German Christians banded together to oppose the sellout by many churches to Hitler’s Third Reich. Seems the pro-Nazi churches twisted themselves into theological pretzels trying to cater to an evil dictator who had wrapped himself in legal ‘democratic’ flags. I lament the actions of those churches who sold out to greed, power and expediency. I find cold comfort (but at least some comfort) in the actions of the “Confessing Church.” They tried every means they could to stop the takeover of their country by facists, racists and greedy warmongering elites. Many paid a heavy price. But we honor them today for their courage and commitment to immigrants, racial and religious minorities, and for standing up to the Bully named Hitler. I am not comparing you to Hitler. Yet. And even if I did, it would not automatically wash away our mutual commitment to Christ and his command to love our enemies. I pray for those churches in our country who have sold out to your crass program of monochromatic bullying the world and helpless Americans…. In an echo of your harsh vernacular, I pray you ‘grow a pair’ and do the right, the good, the compassionate thing towards ALL of your citizens.

I don’t understand

Dear President Trump.  In late November you tweeted, “The only people who don’t like the Tax Cut Bill are the people that don’t understand it or the Obstructionist Democrats…”  I freely admit, I don’t understand it.  People I trust and respect tell me it takes money from the poor and middle class and gives money to the rich.  Very unbiblical.  My dad used to play a game.  He would ask us for a dime and give us a bigger coin, a nickel.  We were thrilled, because we didn’t understand.  You promise us tax breaks and take away even more money in eliminating deductions, Medicaid, Medicare, and food for children.  If true, I do understand.  You are a bully and a con-man.  You take from the poor and give to the rich.  Almost makes me want to believe in Robin Hood.  Maybe we should cry out for Superman.  You know, ‘Truth, Justice, and the American way.”  But the American way has little to do with Truth and Justice these days.  Instead, you flim-flam dollars from taxpayers and give us pennies in tax breaks.  Even as a kid, the laughter of my father told me something was wrong.  Time will tell.  A reckoning will come.  Some call it judgement.  Because I am commanded to love you, I pray for grace and forgiveness and justice… for you… for me… for all those who will suffer under your new tax plan. I pray and I act

Freedom, Equality, Justice and Peace

Dear President Trump.  Impressive words from you.  “We pay solemn tribute to our heroes of the past & dedicate ourselves to building a future of freedom, equality, justice & peace.”  Wonderful words.  I really do pray you mean them.  I pray you will act in all ways to fulfill them in your administration.  But… But… As our Lord says, “The Truth will make you free…”  And after reading some of your writings, listening to you flip flop in your speeches, and denigrate, abuse and insult vulnerable people I come to the conclusion, the truth is, you lie.  I believe loving my enemy is never losing hope that my enemy, you, can change.  Love means never giving up on that hope.  Love, in essence, is the triumph of hope over wisdom and experience.  My suspicious nature makes me wonder if “freedom, equality, justice and peace” are only for certain ‘Americans’ you approve of.  And definitely not for people you call “foreign.” I pray your view of people who deserve your compassion, respect and aid, expands to include those you have previously treated with disdain and cruelty.  I do have hope

…The people run amok…

Dear President Trump. Pat Robertson (whom I almost never quote) said today, ‘Where there is no vision of God, the people run amok.” He said it in the context of a rich white man running amok in Las Vegas for no discernable reason other than the love of killing people with high powered, ‘people killing’ weapons. He said we have a profound disrespect for you, our President. I am trying to respect you sir. Heck, I’m trying to love you. But I do have some questions. Do you have a vision of God? What is it? I pray most sincerely that God give you a clear and compassionate vision. I pray that you hear the collective voices of the Prophets crying out for justice, mercy and service to the poor and needy. I pray you will see the love of God weaving its way through Jesus, Buddha, Moses, Mohammed, Gandhi, Mother Theresa, Mary, Martha, Anne Frank and Rosa Parks, and yes, so many others. I pray you follow that vision of God… Otherwise it may be you running amok. Sad, for I haven’t finished my life course in how to love you, yet.Top of FormBottom of Form

A whole new skill set

Dear President Trump.  I may have been a little snarky these last few days.  For that, I ask forgiveness.  Still trying to get used to this intentional love my enemy thing. Usually I just sneer at or mock those I consider my enemy.  Loving them/you requires a whole new skill set.  Didn’t teach me much about that in Sunday school or seminary… and certainly not in law school.  Noticed today that while your administration wants all social media contacts on some people, the Secret Service at the same time says they don’t keep records on Mar-a-Lago visitors you have.  Again, you are stretching my credulity.  It’s a matter of national security to track social media of some, while not a security issue to track who is or wants contact with you, the President.  My sense is either the Secret Service is amazingly incompetent and/or ignorant, or you have something to hide from the public.  Oh, and let’s not even get into denying birth control coverage for millions of Americans….in the name of religious freedom.   Please pray for me.  I will continue praying for you..  Blessings…

Nasty…

Dear President Trump.  Did you call the mayor of San Juan ‘Nasty.’  Or did she call you ‘Nasty’ Oh, I get it… you accused the Democrats of telling the mayor of San Juan to be ‘Nasty’ to you. So she wore a T-shirt with the word ‘Nasty’ on it.  I feel that part of being my social and political enemy, you lower yourself to school yard name calling.  The problem is, as you well know, that these epithets have a way of sticking.  You are not making it easy for me to love you as Jesus commanded.  Please be careful.  Hilary Clinton may have been too smart to be ‘Nasty’ to you… but a lowly woman mayor of some town in Puerto Rico may well humble you.  God loves us (you and me) to be humble.  It makes us teachable.   As always, you are in my prayers.