19 May 2011

King and Country

I have an imagination. It gets me into trouble sometimes. Like today, I noticed some re-decoration as I crossed the ravine near our house. Someone had painted the rocks in the walls pink and white. Just a few of them on several walls (so as not to be gauche, I suppose) and halfway up the power poles. (Again, why paint the whole pole and overdo it?) Pink and white are Martelly's campaign colors; Martelly is our newly-elected president. I wasn't here for all the inauguration hubbub, because I was in Minnesota...and here, I am resisting the urge to remark snidely about how sad I was to miss it. Oops...I didn't resist hard enough.

But today, walking through the ravine, perusing the new decor, I came upon a series of letters: "GSMM." I pondered them with Will over lunch, but she didn't know what it could mean. My imagination began to churn...God Save Michel Martelly? Wrong language, but possibly, the right idea. After all, he's meant to be their savior, the end of all their problems. "It'll be like Carnival all the time," people say.

I remarked to David how unfair people were being to expect so much of Martelly, and he pointed out that Obama had the same problem. When we didn't have universal health care and no troops in Iraq on January 21st, people were irritated. They felt deceived. And the bad news is...they were. Not maliciously, mind you. But it's the same old story since I Samuel 8.

In my imagination, there's old Samuel, sitting in his rocking chair on the front porch, sipping lemonade, watching the world go by...and here comes Israel, come to pitch a fit about not having a king. Come to tell him that his sons were no good and that they wanted a king like everybody else, whatever the cost. I bet Samuel sighed. He did the right thing--he prayed about it. But it didn't help much when the guy they picked turned out to be a coward, hiding among the baggage. No king (or spouse or boss or president) can match God, and yet that's what we expect. He's what we want without knowing it.

But as I walked home, my imagination was corrected when I found it written out: "Gran Supporteur Michel Martelly." (It means he's a fan.) As usual, there's lots of speculation and rumor flying around. Someone cut the power at Martelly's inauguration, so obviously, not everybody's happy. But the pressure on this guy has to be enormous, and in light of that, I'd like to give Haiti's new president a strange benediction.

May your hopes be dashed, 
that you may turn your attention to the priorities of God. 
May you find out how weak you are, 
that you may know Christ's power in you. 
May your broken heart become a vessel of His love, 
and may the good you do have an impact eternally.

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